Saturday, October 11, 2008

the year of the boat

I recently read a book that I really enjoyed. Unlike my usual fare of epic sailing adventures, this book was about a local writer who took on the challenge of building a small wooden sailboat. The author is Lawrence Cheek, who lives in Seattle and writes travel books and magazine articles. With the skill of a wordsmith, the author describes his frustrations and joys of the boatbuilding project. It is not a book of building technique, but a diary of self-doubt and determination. He often digresses into philosophical musings about life which emanate from his boatbuilding. An added connection for me is his interaction with 'my boating world': the Puget Sound, Wooden Boat Festival, Sam Devlin boatyard near Olympia - settings with which I am very familiar. I have often contemplated building a wooden boat, and though I can't say that this book has inspired me to get started right away, it has given me a clearer picture of the challenges and rewards of taking on such a project.

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