The story behind the story—
When my college graduate son landed a job as an observer biologist with the National Marine Fisheries Service, I was thrilled he’d found work in his chosen major. He’d spent an extra term earning twenty additional marine studies credit hours to add to his biology degree and it appeared that extra effort had paid off.
Until I found out where he was headed.
Dutch Harbor, Alaska, a world class fishing port in the middle of the Aleutian Islands, is an area rife with history. Look at a map of the northern hemisphere and you’ll see what appears to be the skeletal bones of a dinosaur tail hanging down from the tip of Alaska. Dutch Harbor sits near the end of that tail, not far from Kamchatka which was once part of the Soviet Union. The port encloses the same waters where the reality television show, Deadliest Catch, is filmed. My son was leaving Christmas Day which meant he was flying to a territory in the middle of winter, a region covered with snow and ice. He would be working on the Bering Sea.
Proverbs 3:5 says “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding.”
Imagining all that could happen to him, I had to hide my fears. Watching him board the plane, it was all I could do not to run and drag him back. The next few months would be an experience in trust. I spent a lot of time on my knees, not knowing God was giving me fuel for a future endeavor.
When my son returned from his adventure and talked about his in-depth training and his work experience, I knew I had the setting for a great story. From his descriptions of life at the fishing port, the numbers of nationalities that frequent the area, and the personal accounts of men he met, the character of Rudy Taylor began to emerge. All I needed to add was a heroine with a problem. That wasn’t far off.
More next week. . .