Getaways should be unforgettable

By Wendel Sloan: Guest columnist

Some prefer mountain vacations, but having spent much of the ’70s in high places at Jimmy Buffett concerts, I now try to stay more sea-level-headed.

A frequent getaway is the Texas coast (where I’ll be Saturday).

I love getting up at the crack of 10 a.m. and strolling the beaches — fighting seagulls for the remains of the night — flip-flops, pop-tops, bikini tops and, of course, lost shakers of salt.

Last summer I took a five-day Caribbean cruise from Galveston.

During the non-stop activities, it was easy to forget we were in Davey Jones locker. In the wee hours, I’d ditch my malted-exhausted friends for walks around the mammoth ship’s decks.

With salt-mist winds drowning out man and machine, the sky was a splash-canvas of celestial lights — many of the silent beacons’ birthplaces extinguished eons ago during their fathomless travel to stipple the watery cradle of life below.

Standing high on the shadowy stern as the ship’s titanic propellers churned up frenzied whitecaps illuminated by the neighborly moon, I knew a slippery fall would metamorphose my body into the eternal evolutionary dance of birth and death playing out beneath the primitive abyss.

Instinctively, as a large denizen of the deep jumped from the froth, my loose grasp on the rail tightened into a death grip.