Now we are Landlubbers
When he returned from his voyage, the sea had bitten him. He couldn't get enough of the ocean. So, after much persuasion, my Mother agreed to sell our house and move on to a small boat, and to sail around the world.
As a child, it was lonely. I missed having people around, friends. I saw my Mother and Father but they were always busy. One would be on watch while the other slept - four hours each way. I read a lot, dreamed, drew pictures and waited for the welcoming lights of approaching land. Sometimes this didn't happen for weeks - our Atlantic crossing took 5 weeks at sea in the baking heat. Land was freedom to me, our boat was claustrophobic - we were like Hermit crabs traveling with our home on our back.
Lighthouses were the first sign of hope for me. They are there to warn sailors of rocks and danger, but to me, they were the call of land, the call of freedom. They meant that I would soon be able to walk on solid ground, telephone people at home, speak to strangers, and have an ice cold drink. The lighthouse - a mix of warning and welcome - the beginning of life on land.
Now I live on the land, lighthouses are always in the most extreme locations. In wild, dangerous places, on intimidating coasts. At the edge of cliffs. They are the end of the land and start of the sea - the crossover between emptiness and comfort, danger and hope. The beginning and end of everything. They are a gateway to my old life, and I need them to remember.