Finding the Current to Sail Again

Sometimes, it’s the lack of turbulence that leaves you stalled. You enter the “horse latitudes.” Skies are clear, winds are calm. It all gets too easy. Smooth sailing, and then you are stuck. So stuck that you have to start throwing your horses overboard. You don’t have enough food or water for them. Or you just have to eat them. Maybe your best hope is to drift into a current that takes you out to where you can sail again.

It’s a great allegory for many journeys—projects, careers, even lives. There are places you sail into that you have to drift out of.


  • There are other explanations for the name “horse latitudes.” Allegorical in their own ways (at the risk of beating a dead horse).
  • On land, the horse latitudes tend to desertification.
  • Climate change may see the horse latitudes widen into formerly temperate zones. There’s another allegory there—as well as the harsh realities of hotter, droughtier lives for many.

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