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Editorial Review

Good Afternoon

As the Sun Sets on a lazy afternoon on the south shore of Long Island, a woman stands on the bow of her boat looking out at the wonder of what most are drawn to by the millions. Our treasured waterways and beaches are the reason people flock to this Island each summer. On the North Shore and South Shore as well as East End… you'll find an never-ending stream of beach-goers, boats, mega-yachts, sailboats, fishing boats, nautical shops, fine dining and more. This day is no different than any other for most. The difference here, is the woman behind the helm of this particular motor yacht. As she rinses the salt from this large vessel, secures the lines to the dock and shore power cords to the boat, a smile naturally floats across her face. She is confident, strong, proud and wise beyond her years. She knows these waters as well as any old salt that has ever come before her that is twice her age. SHE is.. Captain Katie Hansen.

After years as Modern Sage Magazine's Publisher and Editor in Chief, this native Long Island power house realizes that time waits for no one and so sets out to secure her boating dream. Her philosophy, sage advice, resources and camaraderie have over the years earned her the respect of some of the industries greatest Authors. She has come to a point in her life where wisdom, empowerment and a sense of knowing what she can accomplish as a woman in a man's world has taken precedence in her playground of opportunity. Hanging over the door in her Captains Quarters is a plaque that sums it up: Life is too short to do something that no longer brings you joy.

Growing up on Long Island, Captain Katie Hansen was drawn to the water at a very early age. She purchased her first boat at age 17 and has never looked back. One boat became bigger than next with an odd affliction she had called "Two-footitis". Married 17 years to a successful Martial Arts Instructor, oddly enough, boating is something only "Mom" does. So from a young age, all 4 of the Hansen children have learned single handedly from their mother, how to handle lines on a boat, read a GPS (global positioning system) Navigate from point A to B, secure an anchor and improvise where you need to. More importantly, being away three (3) weekends of the month with her kids has created memories that you just can't buy. An experience every kid should test drive!

One prolonged blast on the air horn signals this majestic vessel is backing out of her slip in South Merrick where she is docked. As her Captain effortlessly maneuvers "Maggie's Wish" in a 360 'degree turn, she looks back over her left shoulder and takes a glimpse of the six women behind her Captains Chair, perched comfortably in the cushioned wicker seats. As they all salute their Birthday Girl with chilled chardonnay, the clinking of glasses can be heard over Jimmy Buffet in the background. On this picture perfect evening, Captain Katie has been chartered for a 3 hour sunset Birthday Cruise along the sheltered, calm waters of South Shore Long Island. It is here where her guests will be served only the finest of appetizers and beverages on stemmed glassware. The crew of "Maggie's Wish" is there to make sure that every comfort, need and detail is tended to while her guests are on board. As Maria, one of the crews mates, makes her entrance onto the sundeck of "Maggie's Wish" her tray holds mouth watering Hor'Douvres for this intimate occasion for this party of six. Maria's smile and humorous personality elicit a round of laughter from the group of fun loving women. From the minute she introduces herself, her guests know instinctively that they are in for a memorable experience.

Earlier, the Captain had taken the group on a quick tour of the boat pointing out it's two bathrooms, two bedrooms, kitchen, dinette and fully air conditioned cabin, which was theirs to enjoy. Jimmy never sounded so good as he did on this state of the art sound system. Nothing but good times exists on this floating piece of paradise. This is a woman owned boat and it shows. The elegance of decor and cleanliness creates it's own statement. These here decks' have never seen fish guts before!

Not being from the "boating world" themselves, this fun group of women were in awe of how friendly people on the water actually were. They commented on how every boat that passed waved to them and smiled as the ladies in return raised their glasses in salute. Even the patrons along all the famous waterside restaurants turn to toast the good times. Maria finishes off the comment with the final blow "Yea, now if we can only get them to do that on the ASPHALT!"

Curious about the boat, one of the guests walks up to the helm. "Captain, who's Maggie?" she asks "I thought you'd never ask" the Captain replies. "Maggie is my sister who lost her battle to breast cancer three years ago" She goes on to explain.

"Maggie knew and understood my passion for boats. For years we had so much fun on all of my boats. I longed for this particular boat for many years and knew it was way out of reach for me. Maggie assured me that whether she were to survive...or not, I was going to have this boat. I wanted so much to believe her" the Captain explained "but due to personal circumstances, I knew it wouldn't be ANY time soon. That was the last conversation I had about the boat with Maggie. She passed away a few days later on July 10, 2004 with all eight siblings and family members around her. As the sun set on her in the beautiful garden setting of Huntington Hospital's terrace, she took her last breath. A beautiful Monarch butterfly landed on her chest as we all held hands and prayed aloud for her safe journey home".

A week later, the most bizarre, yet perfect opportunity to own this boat fell in my lap. It couldn't have been choreographed better! I guess you could say I got a little help" the captain smiled. "Maggie's been one of my greatest inspirations these last 3 years and there was no other name choices more befitting than "Maggie's Wish".. As much as I physically miss her, I know for a fact she's around me" the Captain said. "We had a private memorial service right here on Maggie's Wish and spread some of her ashes near the Fire Island Light House. Exactly what she would have insisted on. We had her favorite music, dancing, food and fun. That's what inspired me to offer that to our guests as a cruise idea" the Captain adds. A silent sense of knowing comes over both of them as they smile in unison together. "What else do you do" the inquisitive guest asks her. Of course, the Captain was only too eager to share

with her some past experiences. "Although no excuse is needed to go out with six of your good friends, family or co-workers on an intimate cruise, anything you can think of to celebrate or create anew can be done onboard. The possibilities are endless and there's nothing as personal as this offered by a woman on the South Shore. Our women's boat seamanship and boat handling classes are in full bloom as well. On our full day cruises, we pick up guests from Fire Island, put our smaller 9ft. Dinghy in the water and shuffle back and forth from the beach to the boat where we scoop up fresh clams from the shallow waters of the Great South Bay. Ice them up, add fresh cocktail sauce and down they go" the Captain proudly beams. "Sounds nasty to me" the guest exclaims. "On the contrary" replies the Captain with a smile "THAT'S summer on Long Island!"

As a beautiful sherbet sky adorns overhead, her stately underwater lights become a festive accompaniment for this balmy evening as "Maggie's Wish" slowly cruises back to port. She is humbled by comments on what a fabulous time was had by all and more so, how much they learned about boating and the surrounding areas they had never traveled so closely to. It is the repeat business and word of mouth that is what has been the cornerstone of this best kept secret in a community of fast paced lifestyles. It's an opportunity to slow down for a while and smell the salt air, leaving your worries on the dock.

Bidding her guests a farewell of gratitude and grace once again the Captain finds herself staring out over the bow. Satisfied with another successful, safe and pleasurable cruise and thankful for all of Maggie's love and guidance along the way.

Thank you again,
Katie Hansen, U.S.C.G Licensed Maritime Captain
(516) 867-6666