Come Sail Away, Come Sail Away With Me…

Pam Pollock
November 2016

My daughter recently penned a beautiful birthday tribute to my on Facebook page. She wrote, “Happy birthday to the most generous person we've ever known. Gaga Pam spreads love everyday with her actions and sweet sentiments, she's a dreamer and a romantic, hard worker and compassionate. Thank you for all you do, gaga! Now show yourself some of that love!”

I am a dreamer and a romantic at heart. I have always fancied that I was a sea captain’s wife in another life, standing on my widow’s walk of my house, waiting for my man to return from a voyage.

I love the ocean, even though I have an immense fear of water past my knees. I could sit for hours and listen to the waves of the ocean, especially against the rocks of the Maine coastline. I will rise at 5 am to go wander the beach and capture the sun as it begins its majestic ascent into the sky.

My husband is one in a million, because he puts up with my quirkiness and all of my crazy ideas, not to mention my moodiness and many faults. This past spring I read about Tall Ships Erie — a four-day celebration of nine vessels, led by the U.S. Brig Niagara, participating in a Parade of Sail from Lake Erie into Presque Isle Bay. I started jumping up and down and asked if we could go. I mean, guys, it’s a parade of ships!! My dear man said yes and I immediately booked a hotel. In late August I got the brilliant idea of taking our two granddaughters along and again, that saint of a man agreed! I was too late in reserving a spot on the ships for a day sail but I was incredibly excited to see the ships sail into the Bay!

The day of the Parade of Sails finally arrived in early September and we got settled into our hotel a couple of hours before the Sail and then the thunderstorms rolled in. The wind howled, the thunder shook the hotel and the lightning performed a hypnotic dance across Lake Erie. We watched the ships leave their moors from our hotel room in preparation for the big sail. The parade was delayed but finally the skies cleared and we gathered for a viewing spot. I was like a child on Christmas morning waiting for the parade to begin; the excitement and anticipation just grew and grew with every passing minute!

I am not going to lie, I got goosebumps and chills down my spine as the first ship, The Flagship Niagara sailed around the Bay! I may have done a silly little bobble dance of glee as each ship sailed by and when the El Galeon an authentic wooden replica of a galleon that was part of Spain’s West Indies fleet and the final ship in the Parade of Sails, rounded into view, well, I just lost any bit of restraint and started to squeal. I was clicking my camera faster than Superman ever could fly like a speeding bullet. We stayed outside until the sunset.

The next morning we took a Pirate Cruise on Lake Erie and were made honorary pirates – Arrrrrr! Our day ended with a dip in Lake Erie and the building of sandcastles.

You may say I’m a dreamer, you’re not the only one the sea is calling, and I must go.