I love boats and ferries. I hate flying and I am not sure that I will ever board a plane again, but if someone asked me to pack my bags and sail around the world, I am ready in an a hour. Well, perhaps two. I would do it despite all the danger involved. To me this is a prospect of incredible, once in a lifetime adventure.
Today my mortgage prevents me from taking cruises, but every time the large cruise ships chose my city as their port, I can not help but stare at them in awe. These large resorts of the sea hold my fascination. I simply love the idea of going to sleep while on the open ocean and wake up in a new, exciting place. The transition is natural and gradual and my logic can grasp and understand it.
In fact, at one time, I considered an alternative way of travels aboard freighter ships. This is to me by far the most thrilling way of seeing the world. Furthermore, it offers opportunities of meeting people that are different, perhaps a bit eccentric, but definitely not mundane. Lots of writers and adventures chose this means of transportation.
I have a long history with the good old ferries. There used to be a multitude of them connecting the Scandinavian countries and even connecting the European North with the continent. But ever since the majestic super bridges were built, the ferries have become obsolete and many have gone out of business. Luckily, my city still has a large port accommodating ferries which sail on route between the Danish islands. I find this to be a comforting thought.
Perhaps the most eventful ferry crossing in my life took place in the August of 1980. I spend two days and two nights on a ferry that connected the city of Hamburg in Germany with the capital of Finland, Helsinki. This was one of the last parts of an adventurous trip, which started about four weeks prior in the former Yugoslavia. We were political refugees making our way through western Europe into Sweden. One can say that we were on the run, for lack of better words. The large ferry was taking us into our future and we were as scared as we were hopeful.
The black and white photograph of me, my sister and my father is taken by my mother aboard that large ship, that took us to Finland. The drawing was made by me, when I was siting on it's wide, deserted sun deck, watching the ocean and the freighter ships in the distance passing us by. Already then at such a young age, I was experiencing a sense of longing, mixed with a sense of adventure. But I was also anxious, a feeling that I sensed was consuming my parents at that time.
It took me decades to fully understand the sentiments and the distress, that the decisions to immigrate must have caused my parents. It takes courage and an incredible conviction to leap into the unknown. As the years passed by, I came to realize that in order to live fully, one has to dare to act, while maintaining the hope and the capability to dream, always embracing changes of the tides of time.