Shapes on the Wind
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Shapes on the Wind is the autobiography of David Lewis, one of the world's old sea salts, sailors and adventurers.An uncompromising participator in the varieties and vagaries of active life, he has ventured onto sea, land and ice in every corner of the globe, investigating and testing the elements — and himself—for emotional and aesthetic potential.This account builds up a comprehensive portrait of a most unusual person in our present culture, a person dedicated to experiencing life outside the usual value systems of money, material possessions and conventional morality. His mistakes and misjudgments are many and freely admitted, yet we learn to tolerate and understand them as we move through his life story, realising that the gains could not have been achieved without some error.He is truly one of the old sea salts, an old man of the sea and younger sailors, pioneers and expeditioners should all know his story.
without warning. Fiona managed to grab on. Charles, though not Fiona, found the show vastly entertaining. Leaving Stornoway, and still in the company of Axel, we duly traversed the Irish Sea to Plymouth. Many lessons had been learned at no small cost, and we set about putting the ship to rights for the role for which she was always intended — to circumnavigate through stormy waters. Through it all, and for the subsequent circumnavigation, the Guardian continued to support us loyally. I still
officiating. He was not well. A quick examination revealed him to be suffering from congestive heart failure, and prompt Shapes on the Wind e-book 12/27/01 1:38 PM Page 102 admission to the hospital in Alice Springs was arranged. After he was back in circulation, we travelled widely together, sometimes with Susie and Vicky, and became firm friends. We twice drove three days west from Yai Yai over rudimentary tracks to the place of his Dreaming, Muranji Rock Hole, a great vegetation-draped
had won their freedom after battling against Cossack armies, and had only been recolonised in the nineteenth century. In the end my impatience would be detrimental to Mimi’s career and sow the seeds of her well-merited resentment of me. It seemed I had learned nothing from that rushed Winterover Expedition. The Arctic, however, strongly attracted Mimi too. We recalled with a shudder our perilous ignorance of the state of the thin, flexing new sea ice in Antarctica. Who better to learn from than
functioned very well indeed after my departure. We witnessed in New Ireland an example of decision-making by consensus, so characteristic of tribal societies. A man was accused of overlooking his neighbours’ gardens with an ‘Evil Eye’, arousing *Given that the ancestral Polynesians had been skilled pottery-makers, it has been a matter of much speculation why their art died away eastward of Fiji, Tonga and Samoa. It was left to my potter shipmate of later years, Robyn Stewart, to answer the
kilometres away we must fly 645 kilometres via Anadyr, and spend at least one night at the airport there before catching an identical ANT 24 forty-seater turboprop for the rest of the journey. In the event we spent two nights in the Anadyr airport lounge. ‘You must realise,’ explained an outspoken journalist from the district newspaper Triumph of Communism, who met us in Lavrentiya, where the potholed streets were now choked with snow and the children’s adventure playground we had earlier dubbed