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Walt Hardester

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Short Stories
· Papa There's A Big Fish

· She Told Me To Do It

· A Steamboat Springs Nightmare

· I Wonder If He Even Realized

· The First One

· Five Minutes Of Fame

· A Simple Answer

· A Kodak Moment

· If A Cat Has Nine Lives

· Cuddles And The Monkey

· Each Day

· The Clinic

· Fog From A Sailor's Perspective

· I Was Appalled

· What Else Do They Put In It?

· Full Circle

· Enough Already

· What Was I Thinking?

· What If?

· The Toilet Seat Delima

· The Marsh

· As Poets

· Never Trust A Leprechaun

· Meditation

· Traveler's Lament

· Hold On Just A Second

· She Packs A Gun

· Green Fruit

· The Best Gift Of All

· How We Ride

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It Began
By Walt Hardester
Posted: Wednesday, July 29, 2009
Last edited: Wednesday, July 29, 2009
This short story is rated "G" by the Author.
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Recent stories by Walt Hardester
· Almost Busted
· Who to Believe?
· She Told Me To Do It
· Five Minutes Of Fame
· Papa There's A Big Fish
· A Steamboat Springs Nightmare
· I Wonder If He Even Realized
           >> View all 67
A day in the life.
It began so beautifully, with the Crimson sun setting in the West. Calm seas with enough wind to keep the sails up. It was hot. No doubt it was going to be a boring passage from the begihhing.

However, the normal time for this particular leg is about thirty six hours. This night was beautiful. The Gulf of Mexico was smooth as glass and the wind had given out on me so I cranked up the Yanmar and was tooling along at about six knots. I had the autopilot on and about O100 I had to have some sleep. The foreward hatch was open, bringing in a nice breeze so I crawled into the V-berth for a snooze. I have radar on my boat and I set it to give a loud warning beep if it detects another vessel within eighteen miles. I also had a hand held GPS at my side and I would occasionaly wake up, check my position and go back to sleep, I felt very safe indeed.

The Gulf of Mexico is a tricky old girl, and many a foolish sailor has taken her lightly. People have come from all over the world to die in the Gulf. I know her well, having sailed her for a few years. The wind and sea conditions can change almost immediatly and go from calm one minute, to raging gale the next.
About three-thirty I was awakened by something hitting me all over. "What the hell was that?", I said to no one. I looked around and everything seemed fine. Then the next one came in through the hatch. Blue water went everywhere and I realized what was going on, bad weather. The wind had gone from calm to forty-five miles an hour, and the sea had gone from smooth to seven feet in a matter of fifteen minutes. The course I was on took me straight into the waves and my bow was going underwater, hence the water down the hatch. I said, "Aw Schit", not because I was afraid, but because I wasn't going to get any more sleep, and actually had to work the rest of the night. I then took a course that quartered the waves so the boat, and me, wouldn't take such a beating, and made it to Clearwater without incedent.
I fueled up in Clearwater the next day and set out again south. After I cleared the harbour back into the Gulf the weather was taking another nasty turn.

I took a break from sailing and went home.


Reader Reviews for "It Began"

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Reviewed by Lily of Lough Neagh C. Dennis-Woosley 9/25/2012
Oh my what an adventure and actually one I can relate to when I was a teen. My Aunt and Uncle and myself took a pontoon houseboat upon Lake Shasta and in the midst of the lake (don't know what hit) but we were in quite a storm! Frightening, good thing I am a good swimmer and half fish!

Rude awakening eh!

Love and Light
Reviewed by pat medlin 4/9/2012
oh my! argggh and ohhh me
Reviewed by Jon Willey 8/7/2009
it is a seasoned tar that knows when land offers the security he should embrace -- there are no, unwise, seasoned tars -- this was a great short story to share with us Walt -- it brought me entertainment and enjoyment -- be always at the vigil my sailing friend -- peace and love -- Jon Michael
Reviewed by Tinka Boukes 7/30/2009
ENjoyed this....stay safe!!

Love Tinka
Reviewed by Felix Perry 7/30/2009
Love this and it brought back so many good memories of when I sailed, you should have swung up Nova Scotia way and picked up a qualified

Reviewed by Karen Vanderlaan 7/30/2009
Reviewed by Rose Rideout 7/30/2009
Sounded as though you needed to go home to catch up on your rest. Thank you for sharing Walt.

Newfie Hugs, Rose
Reviewed by Georg Mateos 7/30/2009
Maybe the Florida coast was jealous of you putting your nose Yucatan way and called the wind to slap you silly! Clearwater, is Fat Benny still going strong in the old marina?


Reviewed by Karen Lynn Vidra, The Texas Tornado 7/30/2009
Great story, Walter; well penned! BRAVO!

(((HUGS))) and much love, your friend in Tx., Karen Lynn. :D

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