Monday, April 28, 2008

One Particular Harbor

Jimmy Buffett has captured me multiple times in his lyrics, including those in the song "One Particular Habor." I heard this one today on one of my web radio stations created with Pandora. And was transported once again, as I was the first time I heard the song. Then, I was a clueless college student battling with the latter courses in my major, and stressing about grad school applications. But 2 things kept me sane: (1) my girlfriend, who is now my wife of nearly 24 years, and (2) the occasional trips down to Mom's to enjoy the beach & the water and just generally unplug from stress. So "One Particular Harbor" means much to me as a song, as it reminds me of my safe people & places. Good songs are able to transport one that way...

Here's what J.B. himself said about the song: "I had my sights set on Tahiti a long time ago and connived my way there through my good friend Tom Moffatt in Hawaii. We went there to play a show to an unknown audience, but that didn't matter. I had still made it to Tahiti. At the airport we were met by an old expatriated American named Hugh Kelly who had run away from home a long time ago. We became instant friends, and he took me to his home on Moorea in the mountains above Cook's Bay. When I looked down at the vista, the song came out as if it had been sitting inside me waiting for the moment."

(The Lyrics in part)

I know I don't get there often enough, but God knows I surely try
It's a magic kind of medicine that no doctor could prescribe

But now times are rough and I got too much stuff
I can't explain the likes of me

But there's this one particular harbour; so far but yet so near
Where I see the days as they fade away; and finally disappear

But now I think about the good times, down in the Caribbean sunshine
In my younger days I was so bad, laughin' about all the fun we had

I've seen enough to feel the world spin, mixin' different oceans meetin' cousins
Listen to the drummers and the night sounds, listen to the singers make the world go 'round

Lakes below the mountains, Flow into the sea
Like oils applied to canvas, They permeate through me

And there's that one particular harbour, sheltered from the wind
Where the children play on the shore each day, and all are safe within

Most mysterious calling harbour, so far but yet so near
I can see the day when my hair's full gray, and I finally disappear
(lyrics end)

This past weekend was gloriously spent with my brother at our cousin's most excellent getaway crib in south Alabama. (The cuz was able to join us for Friday night, before having to do his Dr. call thing Saturday & Sunday). And thus, I now have yet another "Particular Harbor" that came to mind earlier today when the song popped up on my Pandora station. My guess is that my blood pressure was rather elevated when I got there, and was much lower by Sunday morning. Those particular harbors...and chill one out that way.

My upcoming journey to M.D. Anderson's melanoma unit looms...and it did, in fact, come up in discussion there on the back porch of Drew's place. But even that discussion did not raise the fears and concerns the same way it would have here. And I assure you, difficult medical situations were a very small fraction of our chats this weekend. We talked of life, love, and other shared kids...our pasts... It was wonderful!

It truly is a "magic kind of medicine that no doctor could prescribe..." I seem to need that these days. Thanks, Jim & Drew, for administering a very pleasant dose last weekend! Thanks Lisa, for offering me daily views of that One Particular Harbor with your very presence in my life!

Looking forward to my next landing at one of my particular harbors,

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