Silhouetted By the Sea

Hey, Mr. Tambourine Man, play a song for me

I’m not sleepy and there is no place I’m going to

Hey, Mr. Tambourine Man, play a song for me

In the jingle jangle morning I’ll come following you

Take me on a trip upon your magic swirling ship

My senses have been stripped

My hands can’t feel to grip

My toes too numb to step

Wait only for my boot heels to be wandering

I’m ready to go anywhere

I’m ready for the fade

Into my own parade

Cast your dancing spell my way

I promise to go under it.

from Mr. Tambourine Man, Bob Dylan

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Today is our seventh day on the ship — and we’re not even at the halfway point of this fifteen day cruise yet! I so love these days at sea. It’s funny — even though I come on these cruises to relax, and I do that — I don’t necessarily get a whole lot of sleep on them.

A part of me comes alive out here on the open sea, and doesn’t want to miss a minute of what there is to experience and explore. It’s not that there’s that much to do and explore around the ship itself. By the second or third day, you’ve really seen it all, and there’s not really anything new to see after that. Looking out on the ocean, there is just water, water everywhere.

No, it’s the inner journey I’m talking about. These cruises just open up a door in my soul that allows me to explore at will. The kid in me just wants to play, and I let him. The young man in me loves to relive his youth on the sea, and I let him. The mature man in me wants to relish the pleasures of the cruise, the good food, the fine dining topside in the 5 star restaurant on the fantail, Deck 10, and I let him.

The sea sets my soul free to roam, to enjoy the moment, in all of my incarnations of this lifetime, and perhaps, other lifetimes, although I am not in touch with that, if that is indeed, a part of it. I just don’t rule it out. There’s always much more going on than we are completely aware of, so why not? It could be. I don’t spend a lot of time contemplating that, though. There’s too much in this life, right here, right now, to tune into and dig.

We needed some laundry done, as we approach mid-cruise, and being only the one laundrette on the ship, I knew that doing it really early was the trick to having the laundrette to myself. So, when I awoke at 3:30 a.m. on this, the 19th of May , new time (it would only be 10:30 p.m. on May 18th if we were still back in EDT in the U.S., having set the clocks ahead five hours, now), to go to the bathroom, I just stayed up, and went down to the Laundrette with our two laundry bags full of clothes needing washed and dried.

I loaded them in two washers, then headed up topside to the Basketball Court on the foc’sle to shoot my daily hoops especially early this day. The deckhands, who do a lot of their serious deck maintenance in the wee hours when the rest of the ship, save me and them, are in their respective racks, look at me with amusement.

They probably think I must be some kind of a speed freak. Nope — been there, done that, but now I just go on life adrenaline. I just let it flow through me, and carry me along. I try to stay out of its way, and just flow with it.

Yesterday morning, I figured out that the other half of the court, which is closed off by a mesh netting from the basketball court side, and used mostly for playing soccer, has an opening at the top of the netting, so I can attempt full court shots through it.

I started taking some shots from over there, and the one that finally landed on the mark, hitting the backboard and richocheting onto the rim, back up to the backboard, round the rim, then down through the hoop for a successful score, was observed by one of the deck crew chiefs, who through his arms up in the air, and yelled, “Scoooorrrreeee!!!!!!”, laughing.

I had such an exhilarating moment, enjoying not only the made full court shot, but the fact that it was witnessed and appreciated by one of my deck-hand buddies. I stepped proudly all day, enjoying that accomplishment immensely. I’m such a little boy, sometimes! But, boy, does it feel good to be, again! That’s what I meant earlier when I said I let him out to play, when I can.

You know what? Screw getting old — as long as I still have some youthful energy left in this soul, I’m going to express it, and live it, and enjoy the physicality it allows me to indulge in. Lord, it feels so good, after the past two years of thinking this was all behind me. I’m back, baby!!! I love it.

Hey, Mr. Tambourine Man, play a song for me

I’m not sleepy and there is no place I’m going to

Hey, Mr. Tambourine Man, play a song for me

In the jingle jangle morning I’ll come following you

And take me disappearing through the smoke rings of my mind

Down the foggy ruins of time

Far past the frozen leaves

The haunted frightened trees

Out to the windy beach

Far from the twisted reach of crazy sorrow

Yes, to dance beneath the diamond sky

With one hand waving free

Silhouetted by the sea

Circled by the circus sands

With all memory and fate

Driven deep beneath the waves

Let me forget about today until tomorrow…

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