So, how do you go from Hot Shot Lawyer living in a McMansion, working umpteen hours a day, alcohol networking in the evenings, and coming home to a husband you can’t stand, to a passionate writer and sailor all in the span of 4 years?
You light a torch to your old life, wade through the ashes, and Phoenix like, rise up above, and soar into the unknown.
Once you are there, in the unknown, stay open to all possibilities for creative adventure, and when you find something that grabs your imagination, grab it by the reigns and hold on tight.
This is precisely the journey author Annie Dike had to live in order to find herself in the midst of a different journey, one across the Gulf Of Mexico aboard a 35ft sailing vessel.
Both are chronicled in Dike’s latest book, “Keys to the Kingdom,” available at her website www.havewindwilltravel.com or at Amazon.
A good natured, so called “Country Girl,” Dike presents two sides to that image, with down to earth colloquial descriptions of her upbringing in Texas and Alabama, with her grandmother referred to as “Big Mom” and a pony named “Patches,” down to some big city flings with younger men she and muse, “fiesty redhead” Justine refer to as “Toddlers.”
She also recounts, in a sort of compare and contrast method, childlike antics from childhood such as climbing the neighbors tree, with big girl adventures, such as one of the necessary evils among the sailing set, being hoisted up a 50ft mast to retrieve a wayward mainsheet halyard. In one instance she falls, in one she doesn’t, I’ll leave it up to the reader to find out which.
It cannot be easy to live through a divorce, especially one of your own making, it certainly isn’t easy writing about it, and I’ll argue that is isn’t all that easy to read through it either. Portions of the story were unsettling, just in how it relates to situations I’ve encountered in my past, and I’m sure that this may happen to more than a few readers. I would hazard a guess, that if you are reading “Keys” before bed, you might want to stop reading on a relatively serene sailing sequence, or one of the childhood memories, where her father refers to her as “Babes,” lest you fret about it as you are trying to fall asleep.
As for the sailing parts of the book, they are top notch recollections of experiences that are part and parcel with voyaging across long distances. Some of them occur far offshore in bad weather, some occur just getting to the dock in one piece, but they are told in fun and interesting ways, in language we can all understand.
Even if your life’s journeys don’t take you out on the water; even if you have never thought about traveling by boat or have never sailed, or know that cruising, as a lifestyle, is a thing, you won’t feel left out, after all, four years ago, the author was in the same boat.