Night Sail to Rockland
"See what great love God has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!"
1 John 3:1
“I am the light of the world” John 8:12
With most of the local boatyards full, my two sailboat partners, Michael, Bill, and I secured space at a marina in Rockland for the winter. To make our journey to Rockland a little more interesting we decided to make the 16-hour trip at night. We checked the weather ahead for several days and chose a time to make the trip. There was no moon and a forecast wind of 20 knots from the southeast.
We departed Great Island boatyard in Harpswell at 3 pm, motoring into the wind for three hours, turning northeast toward Rockland at Small Point. At 10pm we decided to start three-hour watches at the helm. My watch 1am on Sunday morning about 5 miles offshore of Pemaquid Lighthouse. My time alone at the helm was amazing. Being a moonless night, the stars were brilliant in all directions. This gave me much time to look and reflect with so many awesome sights all around. The scenery, mostly light houses, towers, stars, and aircraft strobes, continued as the heavens became unusually bright. The milky way running northwest to southeast, the belt of Orion brightly shining to the east, the big dipper to the west. At about 2 am, I was startled by the loud screech of a loon who was upset with us traveling in his winter territory. Straight ahead was the bright green Whitehead Light marking the entrance to Muscle Ridge Channel. We entered the channel at 4 am and I turned over the watch to Michael and Bill for the final two hours. We arrived at Knights Marina at 6 am just as the sunlight started to light the sky. We were able to get a few hours rest before Melon picked us up for the ride home. As I rested, I thought and dreamed of what I had just experienced. All the lights from so many sources on land, sea, and sky, reminded me of Jesus saying “I am the light of the world: he that follow me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life. I realized that he is the beginning source of all these lights and was with us in the cockpit that night, holding the light control.
Prayer: Guide us by your light O God, to find safe harbor in your love. Amen.