dark green trees in front of deep blue ocean water

Adventures of a Modern Pirate: January 2020

The pitch in the sound of the engines changed. There was the gut feeling in the seat of my pants that we were dropping and coming in for landing. A glance out the window revealed the usual tropical landscape followed by clear turquoise ocean with waves crashing onto a beach. The big seaplane banked hard to the right and leveled off, going inland. Acres of beautiful lush green island were approaching fast. I glanced up and saw the flaps drop down. 

“Lake George straight ahead!” Peter hollered. “Prepare for landing!” 

“You buckled in?” Julie asked.

“Yeah,” I replied.

“This is my favorite part,” she added with a smile. 

I caught a glimpse of Peter working the controls and felt the hydraulic landing gear opening somewhere under my feet. Then I heard a clunk as the gear locked into position. 

“We fly right over Lake George and then on to the airport,” Julie instructed. 

“Cool!” 

I wasn’t disappointed when I saw palm trees fly by the window and then felt a slight jolt, a shudder, and a screech of tires as the seaplane managed a smooth landing. Vibrant green grass was blown around as we came to a slow stop and pulled off to the side of the small terminal where engines were shut off, wheels were chocked and disembarking commenced. 

“That was fun!” Julie said, smiling wide.

She smiles a lot, I thought. 

Nothing could distract me from that smile and those vibrant eyes as I turned away for fear of melting. Before I knew it, Peter exited, and right away, with the help of two other ground crew, assisted with the luggage. The three blonds disappeared inside the terminal when a couple in a white convertible Volkswagen Cabriolet Rabbit drove up and waved at Julie from the far end of the terminal. 

I watched as Julie returned an exuberant wave and hollered she’d be right there. My uncle and I found our backpacks and we lingered about waiting for Peter, who was busy with paperwork, looking over the seaplane, and having a conversation with the ground crew. 

It was a shocker when I saw Julie approach my uncle and start conversing with him. Next, she waved goodbye and rushed over to her friends, who she embraced, and then jumped into the back seat as they drove off down the road. My uncle walked over and said, “You made a friend. She wants us over for dinner sometime.” 

Gotta get back to my coconut concoctions . . .

This column is part of an ongoing story of tales from the past that continues each month. Read Josh’s previous columns here:

To read more about Josh’s new novel, click here!

Joshua MacLeod is a NSB local and a Florida native. He is the author of Savage Tango and Chasing Latitudes. He lives with his dogs, Durango, Higgins and Oscar.
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