If you missed the beginning of the Legend of the Old Sea Dog, our hero, the beloved Sea Dog, was in trouble. His ship and crew had been blown by a tremendous storm in their quest to reach the enchanted island of eternal youth.
At the end of a fortnight, only two men were left on the ship with the Sea Dog, and the morning dawned bright and clear after the storm. The enchanted isle appeared just at the edge of the horizon! And yet, the sea was as calm as glass, with not even a puff of breeze to help their limping vessel along. Crazed with the thrill of being so close, the men took to the oars, despite their weakened frames. For eight long hours, they rowed, wheezing and gasping, until one of the men finally gave up the ghost just a few furlongs from the land.
The other looked up and saw a beautiful maiden in a red dress standing on the shore--the queen of the enchanted island of eternal youth--and he redoubled his efforts. And yet, the few furlongs were just too much of a match for his strength. At the very last minute, just before the boat reached the shallow water near the beach, he gasped for breath, clutched at his heart, and breathed his last, a valiant act that would be immortalized centuries later on a t-shirt.
The boat floated gently to the shore, and the Sea Dog hopped out, wagging his tail to greet the queen of the enchanted isle.
“Welcome, brave sailor,” she said. “You have attained the island of eternal youth. Drink, my friend, from yonder stream, and then let me entertain you in my palace for the day. For your valor in reaching my splendid realms, I bequeath to you these gifts: You will be eternally full of meat, all who meet you will love you and speak well of you, and your presence will increase the joy and laughter of those who know you.” And the Sea Dog did as she bid him.
(To be continued in our next blog.)