Well, it seems a pretty sure thing that I'll pass through life without doing much to clear up the big mysteries. Those questions of what it all means get under my skin as much as the next person's. But even with all the nightwatch stargazing time that I have scheduled for myself over the last nine years, I haven't made much progress on answers.
So I have pretty cheerfully fallen back on the comfort of the small moments. The everyday delights. Those easily encompassed treasures that with any luck at all any of us can wrest out of life. Take my recent birthday, for instance. It was spent on the sun-beaten, dead-flat winter high pressure sea surface of the southeast Atlantic Ocean. My boys, especially Elias, had been at it hammer and tongs all the prior week, making me presents. I had an enormous pile of loot presented to me along with cake.
One gift I opened was a pair of fishing lures that the boys had rescued from high tide line on a beach in South Africa. We promptly put one of the pair to work, and not long after had a hit. Elias would not be denied the joy of reeling in the mahi mahi that turned out to be on the other end of the line. And in spite of the fish's three or four leaps clear into the air, and my three or four unsuccessful attempts to gaff it, we did eventually succeed in getting it on deck and with no further delay into the oven for my birthday dinner. It was Elias' first-ever mahi mahi, and his delight was even more complete than my own.
This post was sent via our high-frequency radio as we're far from internet range. Pictures to follow when we reach internet again. We can't respond to comments for now, though we do see them all!
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