DIY projects #8 – Yo ho, yo ho, a pirate’s life for me
We pillage, we plunder, we rifle, and loot an island, where a guy falls into the drink. again and again. . . .
pirates for learners and a limited inside sailors’ jargon:‘falling into the drink’ means falling into the pretty much year round ice cold, salty pacific ocean sea, leaving you with apx. 15 minutes – if you’re wearing a personal floating device (more jargon) – before you sink into a deep sleep, diving into a dark, chilly end.
Salt Spring Island is a hub, a melting pot, not far from Vancouver and Vancouver island on the West Coast of Canada and its buzzing. crowded with some locals, more tourists, travelers, vagabonds, homeless, crazies, thieves, beggars and pirates.
from a local perspective a social-worker friend told me how SSI (Salt Spring Island) functions as one of four elements of an urban square, which includes Vancouver, Nanaimo, Victoria and SSI.
within this geographical square people migrate. with them those, who are addicted to various substances and find – Vancouver for instance – too tough of a playground to sustain themselves. shifting to Victoria – Canadas haven to many homeless – they find less violent competition (even though it naturally, due to the huge number of homeless exists there too and more social services.
Nanaimo has a large and notorious drug scene, with more junkies than barristas, where scoring (drugs) aside from the big cities can be of some convenience.
finally SSI, home to narcissistic, self-titled hippies with all their air-bnbs and robes and hung with necklaces, is some sort of weird outdoor shelter for, well, everyone. from down on their luck, too high on drugs, over kids searching adventure, to gold diggers and wanna-be con-(wo)-men.
you can look up the history of the island yourself, but I doubt you’ll find much information about what people here call the ‘pirate cove’. geographically perfectly located off the center of Ganges (SSI metropolis) it’s been a squatting haven for decades. countless moorings, sailing and other vessels anchored, abandoned boats, some washed up on the shore, some re-inhabited by new pirates, sometimes rented, even airbnb’d or bought through funky channels.
as you marvel at millionaires yachts from the cove you wonder how this wild status quo could hold up for so long. I don’t have the answer, but I’m happy that evictions notices, threads etc. haven’t found too fertile grounds yet – the pirates are still out there.
using the word pirate might sound misleading to you and I don’t think that every-body out on the water considers themselves a pirate, but more vagabonds enjoying a life cradled by waves (which can turn quickly into a brutal real life nightmare) and suns rising and setting without having to pay rent.
that and all the poop that is dumped day and night into the bay sparks the anger and agitation by others who have their boats on docks, pay rent, or simply own waterfront and anticipate part of the ocean as part of their property.
I can’t express in words how I disapprove with the wealthy and recommend everyone, who’s taking a crap on the water to moon em!
still there is some bad to the pirate-side of life. I like to look at the interaction between people as between a pack of dogs.
approach – sniff butt – like or dislike – move on – fight
on SSI for example, if you’re dressed with clothing you’ve always worn instead of sending it on its way to the landfill after a couple of years, you might be running into folks, who look similar, but also make a living off their looks, like pan-handling, dumpster-diving, or less honorable stuff like stealing, scamming…
there’s folks without boots, walking bear-footed all year, eye-candy, to milk peoples pity or to draw attention to their life-style, the girl who’s pretending to be blind, bumming money for the ride back to the ferry for so long, that some go up to her and call her out – quite embarrassing, but then people grow a thick skin, like the actor, comedian, artist, writer, who might be disliked, you learn to move on, even if you’re deep stuck in the shit you created.
I’ve experienced many times on SSI passive aggressive spirits, who feel threatened in their position within the pack of dogs, ready to fight over garbage to maintain their rank in this very society / community. drunken, low-life’s taking anyone’s stuff to sell it, trying to pressure you into giving away, or selling your own valuables (like boats, outboards, you name it). I spent months on and off with poor souls, who wouldn’t be able to survive in an environment they’re creating on SSI because it’s much more sheltered and protected, like a zoo, or a national park for the weak and the suffering, trying to make a living out of – often – nothing.
it’s promising to look at a place like SSI and be thankful, that the lonely planet, airBnB and other demons work as magnets, black holes, sucking in everyone from RV-tourist to thugs. mixing them in a big blender, souping an island with chunks of beefy beggars, cheesy charmers and a greasy detail, that blinds, a spice that grinds the – apparently – inevitable manifestation of SSI as an important melting hub.
I personally think that’s great, leaving the hole with greasy hair in the wind headed for the so not important island where (wo)men can be, genuinely taking care of their lives, without having to stick the nose too deep into someone elses’ butt.
now the story never turned out to be about an island and not about the guy I know. but hey, that’s what cameras are for, here’s the good story:
very alive legends tell, that many bodies are hoisted out of the water with their fly open.. you can imagine what happened…