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Monday, June 27, 2016

Life, mysteries, and some satisfaction.

Deep inside I am still pretty shallow. Philosophy, spiritualism, these are ideas foreign to me. Mostly cruising along, auto pilot engaged. Truth be told auto pilot might be too kind, and cruising is certainly an exaggeration. Stumbling blindly and hoping not to stub a toe or break my nose. In many ways life always seems like a string of random, mostly benign, sometimes cruel occurences. Sooner or later all of us would end up a victim of circumstance. For most of us it would be completely inadvertent, left a few minutes too late, try to hurry across the street and get smashed by a garbage truck.

It makes life seem kind of silly when you think the end is going to be so accidental. I could live with that, though. Even find some comfort in the realization that there was no pot of gold at the end of any rainbows. I didn't need to worry too much, because in the end it didn't matter. It made things simpler.

This year we went to North Carolina for vacation. Stayed in a small house right on the beach, and the ocean, in all its glorious magnificence has caused a reevaluation of "life through accident avoidance". There is something about the ocean, something primitive and awesome. Something majestic, and terrible. You look and understand why it has called men to a greater destiny.

Playing  the part of servant and master the ocean has lured humanity to glory, riches and unkind fate. Its siren song is powerful and irresistible. For as long as man has been dreaming he has been dreaming of the sea. And as long he has been able to build he has been building boats. Food, transportation and dreams, the ocean has provided all of these.

It demands payment, though. Many have paid the ultimate price for her services. Grabbing the
unsuspecting, pulling them down to a inescapable, cold, awful end never to be seen again. Even in a time as civilized as today a walk along the beach at night reveals swarms of skittering crabs. Waiting to feast on anything unfortunate enough to land on the beach.  It is easy to find the hollowed out shell of a fish, picked clean, and left to bake in the sun after the midnight feast.

It is the circle of life, and it plays out daily. And somehow I find comfort in that. Knowing that the ocean is always there. Looking on the terrible beauty of the crashing surf. Watching the small  boats filled with men dreaming of catching trophy fish. Walking past anglers standing on the beach with lines running out to deep water hoping for something to tell their friends. Men, machines, and dreams dwarfed the enormity of nature. Somehow it makes a little more sense.