2019 Eddy Award, Best Feature
“Mother Nature, she’s the boss.” Billy Mayer looks at the bay, his eyes taking on the deep blue hue of the waters where Obes Thorofare and Steelmans Bay meet. “You have to look at the moons. You have to look at the tides. All that knowledge? Nobody is going to teach you that. You can’t describe that. It’s just something that you pick up over time.”
Mayer speaks to a primal truth with the poetry of a man who has spent decades on the water. “That [knowledge] has been around since the Native Americans. That has been around since First People: the moon and the stars, the skies and the wind.” You can plan all you want, but bay life relies on being in lockstep with nature’s changeable heartbeat.
Here’s the thing: Mayer is just 23—though to be fair, he and his sister Nicole have been on the water nearly that long.