MY DAREDEVIL BOYFRIEND AND HIS CATAMARAN

If you’re just tuning in, CLICK HERE to start at the beginning! ¬†ūüôā

I started dating a boy, Steve (not his real name), who was a daredevil and a juggler. He said his (alleged) overbearing, alcoholic father pushed him and his siblings to learn all about juggling, unicycles, and other circus tricks so they could perform at street fairs and such, earning extra money. He said he hated having his father tell him what to do…but he was very good what he did. He also owned a small catamaran and a small airplane. He was a daredevil and everything about his life was exciting. He was dangerous, handsome, funny, and passionate. And, that’s why I loved him.

The day he took me out on his Catamaran on Galveston Bay stands out as one of the most exciting experiences of my life. We zipped across the swells with only one hull in the water. We saw wild horses on Mustang Island. We tipped over several times, laughing, eager to right the boat so we could do it all over again!

Later, he took me flying in his plane (and he let me steer, which was and still is very illegal!) and, while that was cool, I much preferred sailing. Once, Steve flew his plane low over my home (buzzed me), briefly turned off his engines, and yelled out the window, “I LOVE YOU!” A neighbor reported him, using the identification numbers on the bottom of the plane, and, after an FAA investigation, he lost his pilot’s license for a year. His father was FURIOUS. Steve was far more fearful of his father than he was of the FAA.

To this day, I detest flying. I don’t like red tape, and delays, and sitting so close to strangers. Just not my thing. And, after one particularly bad experience on a commercial jet with very bad weather, I have avoided airplanes whenever possible. I’d much rather travel on the water!

POSTSCRIPT: Steve and I dated for several months, and planned to attend college together in Colorado someday. Time passed, other boys came and went. One caught my eye and I broke up with Steve (which I later deeply regretted Рhe loved me deeply, intensely, painfully Рand it would take another two decades for me to find that kind of deep love again). Steve took risks in life Рhuge ones. I heard he crashed his plane in a river once, and walked a mile for help with a broken back.

He later moved to Colorado without me and, a few years later, he went missing. Later, I heard they¬†found his body in a crack house. He’d been dead for awhile. He was only 33 years old. He hadn’t done drugs when I knew him but I’d heard from friends that he was getting into trouble. He was a passionate person who lived his short life to the fullest, seemingly tempting death at every turn. In the end, I believe his passionate, intense, deeply loving soul couldn’t deal with the pressures from his alcoholic father and, rather than continue to tempt death with his dangerous lifestyle, he finally ended the pain he’d been enduring for so long. I often still think about him and his poor mother.

NEXT: A CAL 25- MY FIRST SAILBOAT!

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Angela Hoy is a publisher, a blogger, and the author of 19 books. She lived on dirt her entire life before her family gave away almost everything they owned, and moved onto a 52-foot Irwin Center Cockpit Ketch. They all live, work, and play on board full-time.

Angela is the publisher of¬†WritersWeekly.com, a free source of paying markets for writers. If you want to write for magazines, websites, businesses, or others, check it out. It’s free! Her publishing services company,¬†BookLocker.com, has published more than 9,000 books over the past 18 years. If you want to publish a book, she’d love to hear from you!¬†Abuzz Press¬†is BookLocker’s hybrid publishing company. And,¬†PubPreppers.com¬†offers services to authors who are having their books published elsewhere.

MY VERY FIRST SAILING EXPERIENCE! Uncle Irwin said, “Figure It Out!”

If you’re just tuning in, CLICK HERE to start at the beginning! ¬†ūüôā

I was about 15 years old and my brother was 16 when our family was invited to my wealthy¬†and famous aunt and uncle’s lake house in Canada. Aunt Xenia and Uncle Irwin Miller had a summer home on Lake Rosseau in Windermere, Ontario. The details are a bit fuzzy after all these years but I remember there was a large summer house on the lake, with other beautiful homes tucked away in the pines.

The home was surrounded by woods, sprouting fresh raspberries that could be eaten right off the vine. Aunt Xenia took us outside for a foraging expedition and, for dessert that first night, she had the cook serve the raspberries in bowls of cream with sugar sprinkled on top, much like you’d eat cereal. I still eat raspberries that way to this day.

It was summer and the weather and surrounding scenery was literally postcard perfect. The next afternoon, Uncle Irwin took my brother and I down to the water’s edge. Two small sunfish-type sailboats bobbed in the soft breeze. He handed us each boxy, orange life vests, pointed at the boats, and said, “Figure it out!” He then walked back to the house.

That was a long time ago and my brother probably remembers things differently. What I remember is that he spent a lot more time in the water than I did! Neither one of us had ever sailed before but, to me anyway, it was pretty simple. You first had to step into the tiny sailboat without capsizing. Once you’d accomplished that, you had to untie the boat, put up the sail, and try to figure out how to move it forward. With the tiller in one hand, and the small line in the other, I wiggled my bottom, trying to get the boat into deeper water.

I quickly figured out that if I pulled the sail one way, I moved forward. If I let the sail flap in the wind, I went nowhere. If I pulled the sail another way, I took a swim. It only took one capsizing event for my brain to figure it all out. I happily spent the rest of the day zipping across the lake.

I would not sail again for another year or so. By then, I was dating a boy, Steve B. (not his real name), who was a daredevil…

NEXT: MY DAREDEVIL BOYFRIEND AND HIS CATAMARAN

* * *

Angela Hoy is a publisher, a blogger, and the author of 19 books. She lived on dirt her entire life before her family gave away almost everything they owned, and moved onto a 52-foot Irwin Center Cockpit Ketch. They all live, work, and play on board full-time.

Angela is the publisher of¬†WritersWeekly.com, a free source of paying markets for freelance writers and photographers. If you want to write for magazines, websites, businesses, or others, check it out. It’s free! Her publishing services company,¬†BookLocker.com, has published more than 9,000 books over the past 18 years. If you want to publish a book, she’d love to hear from you!¬†Abuzz Press¬†is BookLocker’s hybrid publishing company. And,¬†PubPreppers.com¬†offers services to authors who are having their books published elsewhere.

THE SEA IS GOD. GOD IS THE SEA.

Why are we doing this? Moving our family from a comfortable, suburban, water-front home to a 52-foot Irwin Center Cockpit¬†sailboat? Some have called us “irresponsible.” Others have called us crazy.¬†We’ve never conformed to a normal nuclear-family lifestyle so, honestly, what did they expect? We homeschool our children. We RV’d all over the country for several years. When we sold our RV, everybody finally thought we were settling down. Turning “normal,” they said.

Well, that non-nomadic lifestyle just didn’t sit well with us. We sold our house after just five years, moved into “a deluxe¬†apartment in the sky” (well, it was actually an 18th floor apartment overlooking Tampa¬†Bay), and started shopping for a floating home.

It’s been a long time in the making. And, here’s how it all began…

As far back as sixth grade, I’ve had a deep spiritual connection with the ocean. I attended beach retreats with Second Baptist Church on Padre Island in Texas each summer. Every morning before breakfast, we had quiet time on the beach, each of us spaced far apart, sitting on the sand, looking out over the water with our Bibles at hand. I didn’t do any reading. My Bible lay untouched on the sand. God wasn’t in those pages. He was out there in front of me, around me, everywhere I looked – sailing invisibly above¬†the mist kicked up by the gentle morning swells. He was in the footprints of the tiny terns that skittered along the shore, hunting for their breakfast. He was in the oranges, yellows, and reds of the sunrise, just peeking its head over the horizon, ready to burn my sandy skin later that afternoon. God was the sea. The sea was God. I’ve been spiritually connected to the ocean ever since, addicted you could say. Without the occasional binge, I have withdrawals. Depression. Emptiness. A disconnection from God.

When I was a teenager, having a license meant freedom to get my “fix.” My friends and I would drive the 90 minutes to Galveston every weekend we could, soaking up the sun, sometimes drinking beer we’d stolen from our parents, occasionally tanning topless in the dunes, and skinny dipping after dark. Yeah, I was quite a tart! God didn’t seem to mind. I was more at home on the sand, in the dunes, and in the saltwater, than anywhere else and those were the most carefree days of my life. I miss them. I didn’t know at the time that I’d be living on Galveston Bay just four years later…

Me with my dad, David Phillips, who died of cancer when I was five. We¬†were in Galveston, Texas. Brown sand. Browner water. ¬†I obviously didn’t like having a sandy, soggy bottom (and I still don’t!). Judging from my nip slip, courtesy of my awesome¬†Tarzan bathing suit, I was already working on having limited tan lines.¬†

NEXT:¬†MY VERY FIRST SAILING EXPERIENCE! Uncle Irwin said, “Figure It Out!”

* * *

Angela Hoy is a publisher, a blogger, and the author of 19 books. She lived on dirt her entire life before her family gave away almost everything they owned, and moved onto a 52-foot Irwin Center Cockpit Ketch. They all live, work, and play on board full-time.

Angela is the publisher of¬†WritersWeekly.com, a free source of paying markets for writers and photographers. If you want to write for magazines, websites, businesses, or others, check it out. It’s free! Her publishing services company,¬†BookLocker.com, has published more than 9,000 books over the past 18 years. If you want to publish a book, she’d love to hear from you!¬†Abuzz Press¬†is BookLocker’s hybrid publishing company. And,¬†PubPreppers.com¬†offers services to authors who are having their books published elsewhere.