After sailing northwest for six hours Rich took a reading and charted a course for American Samoa. “288 degrees and about 14 hundred miles,” Rich murmured.
“No man would come after me for 500 francs,” Rich thought, “but for a precious family heirloom belonging to a grandfather—yes. That was a good choice.”
“If he knew my pistol was empty…” Rich thought. “I don’t know. A man sentimental about his own feelings can be a monster toward others. The truly monstrous men have chauffeurs who drive them to work and don’t start the day sitting in a dark seedy bar with a shot of scotch beside them; they have tea, toast, and a telephone; they deal in diamonds and currency exchanges.”
Strong trade winds from out of the southeast pushed The Odyssey to its maximum speed. However, she held true to the challenge and seemed to playfully romp through the waves like a spring filly in a pasture of butterflies and dandelions.
On the third day from Tahiti Rich woke to a pleasant orange glowing sunrise. He started the coffee and stood aft in a light jacket that kept away the slight chill in a breeze that the sun had not yet warmed. He closed his eyes and tried to memorize what was seen as if a verse from a poem. “Sunrise is God’s reminder that the day should be filled with love, warmth, hope, inspiration, and appreciation. Thank you, God, for your reminders. May I find all the good this day offers and if not, resist the urge to be hateful, cold, hopeless, uninspired, and thankless, even if clouds of despair should shield that reminder.”
On the way back to the cabin for coffee and breakfast, Rich stopped at the helm and checked his heading. “So true.”
After breakfast and the clean-up, Rich wrote for a while, then some reading. While reading he noticed it began to turn dark. He climbed to the top of the companionway. “The sun, you have left me.” Indeed, dark clouds sprung from somewhere either out of the sea or beyond the horizon to remove the joyous sun and all the good it provides.
From the southeast clouds emptied its rain like hordes of locusts. In the distance, the splashes into the sea drew closer until The Odyssey became immersed in a torrent as if passing under a waterfall.
Rich took the helm and steadied The Odyssey. The seas were more jarring than treacherous. It was like a wild ride in tractor across a plowed field.
It lasted for 12 hours and suddenly the clouds passed on and the sun appeared just as it was setting into the sea. “I’ll not chastise you for failing me today, for somewhere you gave good, not to mention the grace you provided the other side of the storm clouds.