This is just a quick note today about some summer reading that I have been doing.
My family began traveling to the Outer Banks of North Carolina when I was very young. My Dad loved surf fishing for croakers, bluefish, flounder, and the occasional puppy drum around Oregon Inlet and Pea Island. My Mom and sisters would collect seashells, go into shops, study the history of the area and enjoy many of the activities surrounding the beach and the region. I was more engaged by the action sports of the outer banks. Surfing, boating, boogie boarding, and hang gliding all captured my imagination, even though I really only participated in boogie boarding and body surfing as a kid. Wind surfing eventually grabbed me as a young adult and I spent many hours in my 20’s and 30’s out on the sound perfecting my jibes, tacks, and reaches. I wasn’t much of a reader for recreation as a kid. My sister was. She would read all of the wonderful stories about adventures on the Outer Banks, as well as the rich pirate history of the region.
One of the books that always seemed to be on the shelf, but never in my lap, was the classic novel, Treasure Island, by Robert Lewis Stevenson. Now, armed with a Nook Color and some time to catch up on my reading, I decided to pick up a long overdue read and check it out. As an added bonus, it was only 1 dollar to purchase through the Nook, as a classic novel. What a fun read! I have had a bunch of wonderful adventures as I have read this classic novel slowly over the past few weeks. I have sailed the seas with pirates and treasure hunters. I have battled swashbucklers, run through the woods in search of buried treasure, had incredible brushes with death by pirate and sea, sailed small dingy’s and large schooners, drunk huge amounts of rum and wine, sung pirate tunes by the huge bonfires at night, and outwitted ole’ Long John Silver himself! One downside is that my wife has had to listen to me speak in my best pirate dialect at times that, apparently, she hasn’t found appropriate!
For what it is worth, this has been a nice change of pace in my reading. So often, I find myself reading non-fiction that I can apply to my work and music. Truth be told, that is really the type of reading that I enjoy the most. This has simply been a welcome vacation from my routine. I guess I have always had a hunch that I am a pirate at heart. I am so glad that I have made up for some lost time with this book. I have been reminded several times as I made my way through the book, of my vacations as a boy at the Outer Banks. The images of pirates in my mind have not changed much since I was young. It has been fun to revisit that part of my imagination. I suppose in many ways that boy is still in there. It is good to be reminded of that every so often!
If sailor tales to sailor tunes,
Storm and adventure, heat and cold,
If schooners, islands, and maroons,
And buccaneers, and buried gold,
And all the romance, retold,
Exactly in the ancient way,
Can please, as me they pleased of old,
The wiser youngsters of today:
So be it, and fall on! If not,
If studious youth no longer crave,
His ancient appetites forgot,
Kingston, or Ballantyne the brave,
Or Cooper of the wood and wave:
So be it, also! And may I
And all my pirates share the grave,
Where these and their creations lie!