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"Dam it boy pull harder"screamed old Scoobert.The tide was washing everything out as fast as it came in.Another shipwreck on the rocky coast meant for a day of salvaging.Even if it meant a bit of goriness for the working children to see.Goriness that included bodies washing ashore.The Island Lifeboat resue crew could not always make the rescue`s of passengers and crews of ships breaking up as they themselves faced swamping waves.The Island Life-Boat service was a service that was around way before the Coast Guard and all seashore communities had their team of volunteers sort of like the local fire departments.Many islanders perished giving their lives in heroic efforts to rescue the doomed.But on the other hand some very handsome rewards from the shipping insurance companies could be gotten here.
Old Scoobert was the un-official salvage master on the old island.What he said, goes, family tradition passed on.Everyone on the island had their roles.Even the poorest and rowdiest had there roles.They all became heroes at these times.The cleaning up the beach part was the icing on the cake.The heart-aches for the family's of the drowned were only to begin.Our little island experienced shipwrecks weekly.The sea is savage and will beat the clothes right off of you.The children unfortunately were always refreshed of the horrors of a stormy sea nite when a Captain would fail to see the lighthouse on time.
The waves tasted good in
Wilbur`s mouth "almost breakfast!" he thought.He looked over at Cinthia (the
lighthouse keepers daughter) helping her dad hook some wooden crates.She
wouldn`t even look at him.Her dad was also in charge of the inventory and
cataloging of items for official use.Every one had there roles.
Wilbur was the Ministers son but on the wild side,he was the most eligible and handsomest lad around with long waist lenght curly brown hair kept in a pony tail,dark and weather beaten skin.He alway`s wore a brown leather hat
and white shirts with blossuming sleeves and half pants no matter what the weather.All the girls wanted the minister`s son who was shy but not weak and was also not afraid of the sea.He was a most able seaman himself for a lad.He had a teen-age crush on Cinthia but was embarassingly too shy to say anything.Cinthia knew though and being a young girl her-self had an eye on young Wilbur which only made Wilbur more shy.So when she caught Wilbur looking at her she would giggle to herself and she knew she had everything under control in her women way.
Wilbur`s father was further down the shore adminstering last rites to the poor drowning victims.His mother was with Cinthia`s mom making coffee in the Scoobert`s house for the crew.The mothers decided the fate of the young on the island,who would marry who.All the usual wishing as they knew that most young men would be lucky to survive the sea in those days of wooden craft and paper maps that were out-dated.You could only steer by the stars if you could see them.
There was no weather forecasting,a gale could arise anytime and wash your loved one overboard and bear the sea down on the boat so hard that all would be lost.
Wilbur`s mom hoped he would go into the ministry.Cinthia`s mom hoped
Cinthia would find a boy that wasn`t a seaman.Maybe another Lighthouse keeper,or
a landlubber anything but the sea.Both mothers knew however the Sea was in there
children's blood.A sad affair in there hearts and minds.
"ALL RIGHT MEN!THATS A DAY"called Scoobert."YOUR BUY`N TONITE! MATE !!!"hollered one of the locals.The work was done here.The rescue boat was put away.Back to work on there own fishing vessels the heroes went.Then a night at the tavern was in store!!!
For the children one thing was for sure...they were headed to the rope swing and another day of skinnydipping.Ah skinyydipping,thats where Wilbur`s ego crushed by Cinthia.Cinthia was not the least introverted.Wilbur`s father always drove in to him that it was an Evil.You must hide your body and be ashamed.On the other hand Cinthia and most of the kids just laughed at Wilbur`s inhibition and frolicked innocently naked in the waters.Most people around the country did it in the early 20th century.Who knows,maybe from the beggining of time as far as Wilbur was concerned.Oh but the nudity battle in his mind left him torn.So to see Cinthia strutting by Wilbur in the nude was intimidation to him.She knew it and toyed with him.She also knew he loved it. Later on before dusk as Wilbur passed Cinthia`s house on his way back home,young Cinthia`s watchful eye caught Wilbur from her garden as he walked by the lighthouse grounds.The road was dusty and he found a tin can and began kicking it down the road,his dog Banjo would get it bring it back to him and chase it again.He tried not to look at Cinthia but couldn`t resist.Then to make matters worse,while Cinthia caught him peeking Banjo tripped him to Cinthia`s amusement."Damn YA Banjo"Wilbur yelled out as he picked himself up and ran chasing Banjo down the street.
The sun started warming up the island the next morning
considerably as the storm broke up.... but another one was on the way!
The rain clouds were coming in close.The children only had to be shuffled a few more miles to the island.The Sea`s were rising so fast old Scoobert had to calm the kids down.Cynthia was at the bow,Wilbur at the stern.The other children in between.Cinthia and Wilbur exchanged glances,almost smiles.Wilbur would turn the boat into the giant waves to avoid swamping in exchange for relentless splashing of water on the passengers.Cinthia was not afraid.Cinthia had faith in Wilbur`s judgment of the waters but she always knew no man controlled his own destiny on the Sea.Beside`s old Scoobert was with them and was an able bodied Seaman.
They went for the last few miles bracing for the worst but alas.The children made it to shore.Off into the worried mothers arms the children flew.Off to sanctuary with a nice cup of soup.Away from the pounding rains.
Cynthia was cold and wet,she hurried to the lighthouse hoping to see her Dad.She wanted to tell him everything about her voyage back from school.Cinthia was very close to her old man.She knew that he was the closest thing to a weatherman also.
Without even changing clothes she ran into fathers arms at the top of the long winding stairs.Her dad had been busy pacing back and forth,peering with his binoculers every now and then into the darkness setting about.The light was spinning its same old pace.Piercing its 2 flashes first to the north,then proceeding clock wise warning away the weary travelers from our rocks.The buoy bells were ringing like crazy as tides were rushing in being blown by the sudden northeaster.Cinthia was proud of her dad.She knew he was an important man who held the lives of many people in his hands,She knew this Man of the Sea loved his responsibility with passion.He was a hero in his daughter`s eyes.
"OH Father!"Cinthia cried out"it was horrible daddy,i could-n`t wait to get to shore"she said."but Wilbur was great with his fine sailing Old Scoobert kept the kids calm"."I was watching you darling and hoping for the best"said her father"that young lad Wilbur is a fine sailor Young Cinthia"Cinthia sighed to herself when her dad said this.Almost smiling she turned to her dad and said "Daddy i am going to change and i`ll bring you back something hot Bye Daddy"as she raced down the long and winding stair`s"Don't run on the stair`s"her dad called out as she disappeared out the bottom door.She darted across the lawn thru the rain into their house.
Cinthia`s mom said"slow down girl"as Cinthia came racing into her house."go change now and draw a bath"she ordered Cinthia."Yes Mommy"Cinthia replied as she hurried along up the stairs
to her room.Her room was huge and had a view of the road past her house from one window and a view of her fathers light house and the Sea from the other window.She could spy on Wilbur walking down the road from her room she always thought.
Cinthia was trying to hold a thought for the last few minutes.She was in heaven for her father had said one thing she had been dying to hear.She changed rapidly.She started to warm up and went down the stairs for a cup of soup.
"OH Mother it was the scariest trip home yet but i knew i was safe though"rather odd her mother thought to her self for her daughter to say the safe stuff "I know dear i waited and worried the whole time""I do wish you would change your mind and live with my sister while school is on dear".Cinthia`s mom knew that would never happen for Cinthia`s love for her father was great and not to be touched!out of the question but a good question when thinking of Cinthia`s welfare.
Cinthia wanted to say it but couldn`t.The thought she was holding was her Father`s approval of Young Wilbur`s seamanship.To Cinthia it was almost like her daddy saying he is a fine young man for you my daughter.Thousands of thought`s raced thru her happy mind as she dreamed of the possibility`s that could happen.
The funniest part was that Wilbur had no idea what Cinthia was planning or thinking as she worked her women`s magic around him.As far as he was concerned Cinthia only tolerated him.His heartached for Cinthia but she scarcely gave him the time of day.But she knew perfectly well what she was doing.She would give him just enough to keep him interested like the baiting and catching of a fish....the storm was bearing down now,the rain was beating so hard that it made good napping weather for Cinthia..
The Big Dance
"PSSST,Psst,psst"Cinthia heard.She heard someone behind her
whisper.Then heard it again.
Then she heard a voice she recognized"Hey Cinthia!"
"Hey Slow Down",said Wilbur.Cinthia couldnt belive who was following her."I demand conference whence you now fair Cinthia"commanded Wilbur with a most forboding tone."Must i take what`s rightfully mine now".Cinthia was shocked by his sudden boldness but longed for this day!would it be like this when he finally came out of his shell she thought.How should she reply to his words she wondered to herself.
To call his bluff she decided to give him an attitude adjustment.With her back to him while not stopping the least she replied"Whom might be requesting my attention?"and"Do I know who this might be?"..
"Do you not know how to properly present oneself to a lady? or does a heathen squire approach me i dare say"."Or is this Shy Wilbur whom voice i recognize using false pretense?"she giggled to herself quietly while still ignoring his request and proceeded to keep walking.
"Fine! keep steadfastly walking"Wilbur replied"but you will never forget our sweet dance i can promise you this and if you stop now i will kiss you like one has never been kissed"demanded Wilbur!!!
"Sorry Wilbur, but i really must be getting home to my chores i dont have time to stop for you!"said Cinthia.
"Perhaps you may visit me next week Wilbur when i have some time"again replied Cinthia"please have a nice nite good-bye young sir!".
Stunned Wilbur had enough and disappeared into the night heading for a beach most likely to ponder her answer`s.Cinthia was very happy and headed home.A succesful night after all for Cinthia as she sighed.Her house was dark and after lighting a few candles retired upstairs to her bedroom to write this nights episode into her diary.