Thursday, November 19, 2015

Evanston: the purpose of terrorism; Jonah Lomu; winter dreams

        “The purpose of terrorism is to terrorize.”
                                    Vladimir Lenin

        Unfortunately it works.


        I was surprised and pleased to see this morning a piece in the NY TIMES, repeated in both the front and sports pages, on the death of Jonah Lomu of a heart attack at age 40.  As the article correctly states, Jonah Lomu was little known in the United States, but a legend in the rugby world.  
        I, who have spent years in Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and England, know who Jonah Lomu was.  For my fellow Americans think of tackling Cam Newton running at full speed in the open field, neither of you wearing padding.  Even in a game of big, strong men, Jonah Lomu stood out.  Tacklers often bounced off him, and often he just ran over them as though they were not there.  For those of you old enough, think of Jim Brown.
        THE NEW ZEALAND HERALD, of course, carried not one piece about Lomu’s death, but more than a half dozen.
        He was a rare athlete and a great pleasure to watch.


        Above is the fourth copy of Alan Lucas’s excellent CRUISING THE CORAL COAST that I have owned.  It arrived yesterday from Boat Books in Australia.  I couldn’t find the most recent edition in the U.S.
        I know the way the five hundred miles from Cairns to Cape York—’He holds the world in his mind’—a prize will be awarded to the first to identify the line—but I am considering entering Australia farther south and sailing parts of the coast I have not before.
        I’ve been gradually ordering things to take back to GANNET in no particular sequence.  I order a few.  They arrive.  And I order a few more.  Courtesy flags for South Africa and Mauritius also arrived yesterday.  I already have one for Australia.
        So far I have Dyneema line to replace GANNET's lifelines, which are not seriously worn, but critical and GANNET-size line is cheap; a dock line to replace one I’ve used as a bridle on her Opua mooring; LifeSeal sealant which I can’t get in New Zealand; Dremel cutting discs which I can get in New Zealand, but not easily; a flag pole and a flag pole mount—tied to the backstay, the fluttering U.S. flag jerks the rig around too much.
       Snow and below freezing temperatures are due tomorrow night.  My sailing season is over.  So may be yours.  All we have is winter dreams and the certainty that “you can never hold back spring.”