Ship’s Log: Day Thirty Four (Melbourne to Tilbury)

Thirty-fourth day of the voyage: fourth day of the Atlantic crossing.

The strange triggers of memory: passing along the Carolina coast, outside the string of islands that once hid pirates but now conceal ships from the biggest navy in the world (also pirates), I recalled the brief trip with an ex-wife and two daughters to the coast along here in 2004. I was teaching at Duke for a short while. A moment of rebuilding, a different reconciliation. And then, as we slipped by south of Cape Cod and touched the tip of the Grand Banks of Newfoundland, I went back two decades to Montreal and journeys to the Cape and then the long summer trek out through Quebec, the Maritimes and fascinating, rocky Newfoundland. Only three children then, the third a new baby in nappies.

A different time but not another life (unlike other moments) for these are memories of profoundly formative times – and entirely unexpected on this voyage.

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