Previous Challenge Entry (Level 4 – Masters)
Topic: ALL TALK, NO ACTION (01/10/19)
- TITLE: Are You Kidding Me?
By Bonnie Kronberger
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Somehow, my dad came up with the cockamamie idea of motoring across the ocean to the Galápagos Islands, leaving everything behind except my mom, my eight-year-old brother and me. Wait, there’s more. We would have another family with us; my dad’s best friend, his wife and two young kids. Maybe this adventure wouldn’t seem so hopeless if they had a seventeen-year-old son.
I wasn’t privy to any of the conversations between Dad and Tom. I just imagine they were ready to leave the drudgery and struggle of raising a family in California with low paying unstable blue collar jobs. My dad was a dreamer, always seeing the grass greener on the other side. He and Mom must have had some lively talks about pulling up stakes for the unknown, but mom apparently submitted in the end to this folly.
I don’t know why they picked the Galápagos Islands. Known for exotic animals, giant turtles, and a sparse population, maybe back in 1962 homestead opportunities were available.
Dad and Tom must have had many long and detailed conversations about the move. I was insulated in my sixteen-year-old world, unaware of all that was being planned. That changed the day Dad told us we were leaving our three bedroom rental house and moving onto a forty-five foot old diesel boat; no yacht, no sail! This became our home for six months as talks continued and details were finalized. Nobody asked my opinion. Lovely!
The boat cabin was probably 8’ X 10’. Narrow couches lined both sides. At night the back of each couch was pulled up and attached to chains from the ceiling. Voila! Four bunks to sleep on. A small kitchen and storage finished out the space. A little door opened up into the bow. Crouching down, you could step into a small hole to a tiny toilet. Thank the Lord, we never had to use that toilet while we were docked at the Marina. A nearby outbuilding housed a shower and flushing toilet so we weren’t completely roughing it.
I was NOT resigned to this move. I did not want to be on a small boat with four adults and three kids, floating the seas. Really? I knew my folks would never leave me to live with friends, so grandparents were my choice. They lived away in a little community but it was the better of two evils. My parents considered this a possibility.
My mom was a praying Christian, so I suspect she surrendered this upcoming adventure to the Lord, hoping that He would put the kibosh on all the ridiculous plans. I too was praying, but my prayers were a bit more self-centered.
Nevertheless, God heard and answered. It turns out Tom emptied out his house, ready for the move, then burnt it down to collect the insurance money. Although my dad was not on good terms with Jesus, he had a moral compass that said an arsonist did not have the character qualities he wanted to partner with. Praise the Lord. Bye-bye Galápagos Islands. Good riddance boat.
I can only imagine the final talk my Dad had with Tom. Needless to say, that friendship ended. We moved back to normal living, and I survived my teenage years, complete with family. I thank the Lord their crazy plan crumbled to ashes, just like Tom’s house.
Proverbs 15:21 “Folly brings joy to one who has no sense, but whoever has understanding keeps a straight course.”
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