For the past 19 nights, I’ve slept in the belly of an empty boat about 12 feet off the ground in an isolated shipyard in southern Louisiana.

The days out here have been unmerciful. The heat, unrelenting. Tensions high. It’s been an obstacle course of pain in my ass.

There. I said it.

I smell like onion soup that’s been left on the front porch for three days in August. Of 2015.

I’m cranky and irritable.

The downpours have been torrential and a little terrifying.


The nights are something else.

They’re fun. I’m instantly transformed into eight-year-old Autumn who got excited at bedtime.

It’s darker here. The city lights are far away, and the pitch black is an enormous canvas for a wandering imagination.

It’s cooler in the dark. I need exactly one threadbare sheet when the fan is running on high.

It’s absolutely silent. No TV. No car radios passing in the streets. Just the whistle of the wind through sailboat lines.

I’m reading Trickster Makes This World as I fall asleep, and at night, in the hammock, I can relate to the wily character. I feel like a scofflaw, and I like it.

It’s a feeling of power over my own destiny – whether it turns out well or not.

No comfort. No convenience. Limited resources.

But agency and confidence.

Sometimes in the heat of the day, I’m not sure if we made the right gamble here. Maybe this was a terrible idea.

At night, though, I wouldn’t change a thing.

We drop in the water again tomorrow. Fingers crossed and buoyant thoughts.