I’ve had a date with the Salem ferry for a couple of weeks now, thanks to a ferry-friendly friend who assures me the ride is nothing but calm seas and the wind in your hair. And drinks on the deck on our trip home. And hey, you can see the land the whole time! But I don’t like ferries or boats or ships or rafts, so it takes a lot of convincing. Turns out, today is the perfect day to take to the sea. We walk to the landing this morning, post-commuter rush, under blue skies and puffy clouds, going to work, yes, but going in style. Until we see people scattering from the dock and no ship in sight.
“What’s up?” I ask a mom and her young daughter.
“They canceled the morning ferry,” mom says.
“Choppy seas,” says the toothy girl. I see myself hanging over the rail, inhaling the inescapable exhaust, and praying for land.
My friend is dejected. I think more along the lines of thank God. Ferries and rough seas do not a good cocktail make, especially on my maiden voyage. We wander to the pedestrian ‘ole commuter rail and sit sandwiched next to a woman with three bulky bags and no desire to move them.
Instead, we dream of salt-licked cheeks and leaping dolphins that glisten in the sun.