When we had travelled two weeks by sea, I was interested in what had happened in the world’s affairs in the intervening period. Now five weeks further on this voyage, I am not. Strange. What matters now is not the world’s affairs, it is the wind, the waves, and the whales. The immediate important world is forty or so of us floating on a ship about that many metres long. What watch am I on next and can I grab a little sleep before then? Is that west wind building? How much snow needs shifting from the deck? Does that yard need bracing? The triviality of the world is inverted. I cannot bring myself to even write of the things that once I devoured as important news. I hope that when I return home I can maintain that priority and the imperative of the immediate and the close to hand. The broader world matters no more and becomes trivial, next to nothing. It is only distant news from other oceans than mine and deserves scant attention. It will not change my course or sink my ship. My family, my friends and my home will be my ship, with a happy unruly crew and weather of some sort in the offing. I am heading for port to change to that vessel now. I am scared it will leave port without me.
Oh my ship, my sea, my spirit.