Off to Sea
Sorry there was no post yesterday! Had no chance to do one and I was feeling uninspired anyway. In case you haven’t read my previous posts I am challenging myself to write a short piece of fiction starting from a famous first sentence. And I stop after twenty minutes. So here’s today’s attempt using the first lines from Middle Passage by Charles Johnson.
Of all the things that drive men to sea, the most common disaster, I’ve come to learn, is women. However for me it was not so much women but the lack of women in my life. Having spent my youth on the Greek island of Santorini, it was expected that I would marry one of the local girls from the town. I had had a few girlfriends over the years but after I turned eighteen the interest in me seemed to die down. In fact it was stone cold dead. As the tourist industry waned, the small family businesses suffered and so many relocated to Athens and Patras, and the daughters followed. I put my energy into working hard in the harbour. I spent many hours sitting in my boat, the ‘eleutheria’, with my best friend Christos while we fished for salmon that we could the sell to nearby restaurants. But as the years went by I become a lonely man and by 27 I decided things needed to change. I was sad to leave Santorini, the island where six generations of the Anastas family had lived and died. I didn’t know where I would go but I knew I would miss the white washed walls contrasted against the dazzling azure sea. I packed up my things into a small canvas bag and headed to my boat. I had stocked up on a few essentials, some wine, and a variety of vegetables that I could eat with whatever fish I caught on my travels. Though it would be a lonely life for a while I couldn’t contain my excitement. Somewhere out there was a future for me. There was no time to hesitate. After kissing my mother and shaking my father’s hand goodbye I left the dock and headed out. The white walls faded into the distance till I could see nothing but sea and the sun.