The first is that John was just down here last week. He had been in Cabo to orchestrate the marriage of his daughter. All had gone well, and John was driving back to his home in SoCal. He stopped here in La Paz, spent a couple of nights with us, and left Wednesday morning, heading home to arrive, as he put it, "weekendish". He died in a head on accident on the road north of here, about 3/4 of the way home. The fact that we had just spoken brought home to me the suddenness with which this sort of thing can happen. I was going to send an email on Sunday to confirm that he had gotten home safely, and now I can't.
Secondly, John and I got along really well. We had a relationship and understanding of each other that went beyond fisherman and fishing service provider. Although we came from different spaces, and traveled different paths, we ended up in places not very far from each other. Our taste in and dependence on music for entertainment and foundation were in parallel. Our "nose to the grindstone, but try to have fun" philosophies were in sync. Whenever John came through the front door, whether it was a scheduled trip or one of his spur of the moment visits we always picked up the conversation where we had left it on his last visit, discussing the news, food, music, families, business conditions, and a rapidly shifting range of topics that often left spectators bemused.
Referencing the Goldsmith quote above, John's attitude about and approach to life emphasized the amusement of the imagination. He used the phrase "It's all good" quite often, and meant it. For someone like myself, for whom the darker sides of life are often whispering in the background, his good humor, optimism, and desire to seek out that which would amuse his imagination were examples of a different way to look at things. It wasn't just a phrase thrown out to deflect adversity. John saw it all as good, and fun, and was a proactive participant in making it more so. From my perspective, according to Goldsmith, John was a very wise man. That is consistent with my understanding of John and his approach to life
He leaves behind a wife and children, for whom I can offer only y deepest condolences and respect for their loss. He also leaves behind a large number of people upon whom he had a positive effect over the years. An inveterate Baja wanderer, he had been to many of the nooks and crannies that are scattered up and down this peninsula that we call home. Many that I have not visited, some of which I had never even heard of. In each of these places that were special to John there are undoubtedly people who will miss his visits, his humor, and all the things that made him him. I know for a fact that those people here in La Paz that were lucky enough to experience John will miss him terribly, and we can only try to remember and incorporate into our own lives the example of "innocently amusing the imagination" that he set.
Buena Suerte Amigo,
David Jones and the Fishermens Fleet Family