I used to think that if one took a cruise, one could stand at the prow and feel the water a few feet below and the wind in your face, and I was so disappointed to discover that is not the truth of it. I have, however, found the desired sensation standing at the end of a pier or on the deck of a ferry.
The first time I was on a ferry — the Outer Banks of North Carolina — Pamlico Sound was so big, I felt as if I were in the ocean, traveling to some exotic place. Which I was, of course, because anywhere you have never been has an exoticness all its own. Still, although the ferry trip was much shorter, I still had the feel of a fabled ocean voyage because of the nearness of the water and the wind in my face. The reality, of course, is that the ferry itself is a cross between a floating garage
and an airport waiting room, but fun all the same.
The Olympic mountains in the distance welcomed me to Kingsport and expressed sadness that I had to cancel my camping trip to the national park.
My middle sister and I spent a lovely couple of days wandering around Port Townsend, visiting the little libraries,
and picnicking on the port. Looking back, on the ride home, I could see the boat’s wake. Looking forward, I could see Seattle (barely visible in the center of this photo.
The next day, we three sisters got together for lunch in Edmonds.
We strolled through downtown admiring the gorgeous blooms
and stopping to smell the roses.
At the end of the day, I waved to middle sister on the ferry.
Ah. Ferry magic.
(Pat Bertram is the author of the suspense novels Madame ZeeZee’s Nightmare, Unfinished, Light Bringer, More Deaths Than One, A Spark of Heavenly Fire, and Daughter Am I. Bertram is also the author of Grief: The Great Yearning, “an exquisite book, wrenching to read, and at the same time full of profound truths.”)