Voyage Into Life (Soft cover)
by Detlev Kirchgatter « View this author's BIO
In meeting fog on the high seas it has the tendency to creep up till one realizes that what one believed a cloud for what it really is. If with sea room to spare, off traffic lanes, senses are sharpened, hearing intensified but real concern is lacking. Same as walking through the shrouded city one is left to a world of one?s own.
Non-concern vanishes in restricted waters with traffic about, with rocky fangs waiting for the unwary, even shallow mud banks, will catch the culprit not on guard. In this case one does not willingly set out. The emphasis is on willingness. Having to make passage we found ourselves in the Alligator River that drowned wide river mouth leading into Albemarle Sound. It is shallow, it is well marked every three miles or so by a type of marker ten to twelve feet in elevation. The channel must be followed closely for dredged up ooze is dumped parallel with it. The resulting ridge is visible at times, at others it is awash under a foot of water.
While still in the river, proper fog had descended. We could live with this. Visibility being about one quarter of a mile. The wooded shores seemed to prevent complete veiling. Upon entering the mouth of the river it became impossible to view the bow of our vessel from the cockpit. Anchoring now would be foolish. As in driving a car in fog there are always those believing to be blessed with x-ray vision passing one at unprecedented speed. There are such power boaters about. Maybe they do have radar; maybe they have a sixth sense. I have little trust to detect us, a sitting duck if anchored.
This book starts in Germany. When deep in mud on the North Sea he promised himself one day he would view land from seaward aboard his own vessel.
Years later he realized that promise when a boat was built for him in Canada. He sets out on the long trek from the Great Lakes to Norfolk, Virginia where he definitely departs across the Atlantic to Gibraltar.
Awaiting his wife in Gibraltar he answers long overdue letters. Together they continue to Barcelona in Spain.
In anticipation of a new crew his wife departs and he has time to reflect on their joint visit in Berlin and some of the most recent political developments.
With that arriving new crew he leaves Barcelona for Antigua via the Canary Islands. In Antigua his wife rejoins and both sail to Florida to ultimately continue home via the Intra Coastal Waterway. The voyage ends in Kingston, Ontario.