This Week's Story

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How does a man pursue his dream?

This Week’s Story relives American history and the Bible through brief inspiring stories presented on mp3 audio recordings and text for reading.

The Dream Comes, part three

Years were passing, but not in ho-hum style. Carl and Peri were working hard and saving for their dream sail around the world. It was head-spinning to know all the jobs they were juggling. Carl was a propane distributor and school bus contractor. He managed his furnace repair business; and had renters for a 4-plex, a house trailer and a home he built. He was learning the stock and real estate investment business. Peri kept her job as secretary for the school district superintendent.

The increase in income sources and investment returns was making Carl’s retirement possible at age 47. He read many books about sailing. They became part of him. He bought a sailboat of minimal ocean-cruising size. It was a Norsea 27. They named her Northwind.

As Peri and Carl travelled down the coast near Vancouver Island, news reached them that August 25, 1985 a drunk driver had killed both of their children. Kurt, almost 22, was a student at the University of Alaska-Fairbanks. Kara, nineteen years old, was a student at the same university.

Peri lost weight. Sleeping was difficult. She thought her life purpose had stopped. In 1987 she and Carl were able to continue their trip. They entered the Sea of Cortez, with mainland Mexico on the east side and Baja California on the west side. Peri was unable to keep a night watch. Carl tried to replace her by keeping a continuous watch. He hove-to on a track parallel to the shore. While hove-to the boat sailed past a headland; and followed a wind-change into a rock-filled bay. The Norsea27 sank.

When Carl and Peri managed to reach shore, Carl was arrested and put into handcuffs for littering the beach. Many of their belongings had washed ashore ahead of them. Peri was left on the beach and spent many hours frantically looking for her cat. Carl was not detained for long.

They agreed on a new boat law. Whoever was to be on watch, would have to be near death to not keep watch schedule. They had a big question. Are we going to continue with our dream and sail into adventure?

Sailing is high-risk, demands rigorous exercise for physical fitness, and many skills. Sailors experience a higher rate of fatalities than downhill skiers or football players. They contend with the possibility of high winds, falling overboard, even operator inattention.

Carl and Peri agreed. Their dream was not over. They returned to San Diego and bought another cruising boat.. They spent one year of steady work outfitting it for offshore cruising.

They sailed around Mexico in 1988 and then began their sail around the world. More surprises came. Their investments in Asia were deteriorating. They sailed on to the Red Sea and put their boat on the ground in Cyprus. Carl shifted their investment funds into the United States, and they flew home to Alaska in 1990.

Carl would become a teacher. A detour, but not a dream-stopper.

This is Barbara Steiner with a story of determination that will finish in our next episode.

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