All good things come to an end, but that doesn’t take away from the goodness. That which was good was good and shall be for evermore. All the good times I had sailing ‘Ladybird’ this year can never be taken away. I shall remember them for as long as I live.
As I saw her being lifted from the water at the end of an extraordinarily brilliant season of sailing, I thanked God for the enjoyment He graciously bestowed upon me. It is only by God’s mercy that we receive any good things*. We have no ‘human rights’ to receive them. There is nothing fair and equal in this world, no matter how dedicated politicians and do-gooders would try to have us believe, and their efforts will never achieve their utopian dreams. People are not born equal. We all know the truth that we are all born very unequal.
Those of us who sail boats can trace back to the origin of our love of sailing, some like me for more than sixty years, and others perhaps for only months. Circumstances brought us to our passion; in my case the chance that in my youth I lived only a few yards from a very inspiring man who built and sailed small craft. He encouraged me to build a canvas canoe and rig her with sails, and from that time onwards a tiny spark ignited a flame in my heart that in time has engulfed a forest and goes on consuming more and more of my life, revitalizing with each new experience of boat ownership and adventures on the water.
The summer of 2010 was as good as it comes from a thousand mile cruise along the south coast of England, mostly alone aboard the Seawych ‘Ladybird’. I met numerous people, friends and relatives; visited many ports, rivers and marinas, and I had some very challenging sailing, particularly around Portland Bill on the return passage. On such an occasion when through unexpected circumstances because of a strong wind that was not forecast, I found myself sailing on the edge. I would not have chosen to be in those breaking seas, but I had no option. I was there because God wanted me to be there; I put my faith in Him and He watched my every move as His waves gave me the ride of my life. Excitement and exhilaration could not be equalled. Would my little boat be pooped? Would she broach and be filled with tons of water?
Weymouth Harbour was never so lovely. The sun shone, and there was little hint of the wind at sea. I climbed the gangway and headed for the fish and chip shop just before closing time. Never so delicious was the taste of cod and chips, laced with vinegar and salt.
*Matthew 7:11, James 1:17, John 3:27