My dad, some other people, and I were on a trans-Atlantic crossing in the 48 foot sailboat the Betty Ann, a boat we’ve sailed many times before. We were out in the middle of the Atlantic when some huge waves appeared on the horizon. As the waves got closer we could see that they were easily 100 feet tall, and were about to break. “We’re screwed” someone said.
Unknown to us we had stumbled upon a part of the ocean where it was only 20 feet deep, some undiscovered mid-Atlantic shoals, and these giant ocean swells were being kicked up into huge beasts. When the first wave was a few hundred feet off our bow, and our capsize imminent, a part appeared in the wave’s base. The wave turned into an arch, a half doughnut of water connected by a wall of water at both ends, and we sailed right through it.
We all stared at each other in disbelief. We had no time to wait though because the next wave was already upon us. And the same thing happened.
This repeated a few more times as this unnaturally large set of waves came through, and each time we were amazed as we looked up and saw the arch of water pass well over our mast and then re-form into a wave behind us. Only one of the waves, a smaller one thankfully, did not do the arch thing and we had to ride up its face and then down the backside. It was tricky, but we handled it.
Later on in the trip we were sitting in the Betty Ann’s cockpit talking about the amazing arch-waves when I looked up and saw a red stoplight ahead with tons of cars parked on a road. I realized we had full sail set, and were also motoring at cruise throttle. I jumped up off the seat and ran to the wheel which was on auto-pilot. I shifted into reverse and pinned the throttle. The engine screamed, and the prop cavitated, but just in time the boat came to a stop right at the end of a large traffic jam of cars on a road.
The whole crew got out and walked around (since were on dry ground now) trying to figure out what was going on and how this could happen? How does the open ocean and nothing in sight except the horizon suddenly turn into a road full of stopped cars? Then I saw it it. A large sign on the side of the road proclaimed: Welcome to Massachusetts.