by Bob Moore
It's two in the morning, just a few miles from the exact center of nowhere. The sea is running about state 3, but the North Atlantic sail keeps the spray at bay. It is a beautiful August night, new moon, without a cloud in the sky. The night cook has just sent up more coffee without being asked. A man can gain sainthood for such acts. There hasn't been a contact for over an hour, so even the usual game of "report-them-before-the-radar-does" is getting pretty dull. This is a good thing though, because on this August night near the center of nowhere there are other distant lights that are not attached to mast heads. Most of them are yellow, but there is an occasional red or blue one. Now and then one will flare up enough to cast a faint shadow, and perhaps it will split into several lesser lights.
All too soon it is time for us to be relieved. We linger for a little while, then head below, leaving the spectacular display of the Perseid meteors to the next watch.