I think that if there was just one thing that all commercial fishing families had in common, it’s that they are never idle. It’s not that we wouldn’t like to sit down, take a load off, put our feet up…it’s more that we can’t or don’t allow ourselves the luxury. Just like on a fishing boat, there is always something that could be done, and you’d just better get up and get to it.
When my sisters and I fished for my dad on our family boat (the one pictured at the top of the blog), we never dared to be caught “standing around.” At any moment, Dad could lean his head out of the tophouse window and we did not want to be seen leaning against the bulwarks staring out to sea or sitting on a tote, half asleep, in between sets!
We also always kept a line (heavy rope) available nearby that we could just coil again and again to look busy, should Dad happen to look out the window or even worse, walk out the galley door right onto the deck when we thought he was safely in the tophouse keeping an eye on the net! Likewise, we kept the deckhose ready to go at a moment’s notice. You think you’re done rinsing the deck clean of salmon slime, jellyfish, and kelp? Keep rinsing! Dad’s coming!
Ah, good times and great memories!
In any event, that extreme fishing work mentality never leaves you. It’s ingrained from birth. Even if you do manage to sit down and relax or sleep in later in life, I think there is always a part of you that feels “guilty” for being idle (even if it’s well-earned!).
I took a class last fall (Platform 102 with Christina Katz) that–among other priceless pieces of knowledge–taught me everything I need to know about the importance of starting a writer’s website and the tools to make it happen. As a result, I bought two domain names and planned to build a website for one of them later in the year.
At first, I thought I’d hire someone to create a website. After checking around on prices, though, I figured my best bet would be to buy a nice program and work on it bit by bit on my own. Finally, while snowed in with the family, I decided to just “get a start” on the whole project while I had some quiet moments. So, I took a deep breath, activated my domain, and got right to work with the free software that came with the purchase.
I have to say that while I certainly have no future in website building, it has been a lot of fun. I’ve created pages, uploaded photos, written copy, and called technical support only once. “Impressive” and “creative” are not words that come immediately to mind when I look at my work, but it has definitely been fun playing around with the whole project until I get better software.
Have a wonderful and safe New Year’s Eve and a relaxing start to the New Year tomorrow.
Goodbye, 2008! May the next year be just as fun, healthy, and interesting.