The world is an ocean, the mind a ship, the will the hand on the wheel.
For many the voyage is steady. Though the ocean may switch from calm to rage, from doldrums to maelstrom from gale to breeze, the vessel persists and meets each challenge of the sea smartly. For those of us who struggle the ship is faulty. Sometimes the hardest correction on the wheel has no effect on the rudder. Sometimes the slightest twitch will put us broadside to a wave. The tempest towers above us and the ship wallows in the troughs between walls of pewter grey, helpless to steer. Other times the controls respond and we can steam headlong into the choppiest of waters. Viewed from some far horizon we are making headway, but for us there is no such thing as plain sailing. Every groan of the decks, ever tiny leak presages doom and we are convinced from second to second that we are about to be lost. Sometimes, even when the going is good, without warning the cargo may shift and, thus unbalanced, we can capsize on a millpond.
None of us have instruments to predict when the sea will change. Some of us have the confidence to predict that when a storm comes we will be able to handle the helm. Some of us plough on not knowing from one moment to the next whether the ship will confound us, or for how long its mischief will last, and sometimes, when the sea demands the most attention from us, you can find us below decks, blind drunk in the cable tier in the dark with the rats.
Do not assume that the quality of the ship is to blame. The same calamity can afflict every vessel from the grandest liner, through the fastest frigate to the lowliest tug. The abyss is only ever as far away as the thickness of the hull.
Whatever you sail and through whatever waters, have a care; for if the wheel spins loose in your hands and you see the tidal wave approaching, you will hope, as we all hope, that another ship passing by will come to your aid. All we ask is that you listen for the distress calls and be ready to offer assistance.
All of our voyages end at the same destination and none of us have the luxury of turning back. We may as well sail together.