Widower Collin Matthews retires to Port Tiffany, Washington, intending to write and sail to Alaska, but people keep drawing him into their lives and he’s running out of time, energy, and patience. He’s lived his accomplished life powered by his own creativity, brains, and energy but he has a growing fear he is running out of energy.
A dying neighbor, a cheerful pastor, a mystery, a daughter in distress, and an intriguing woman from New Mexico all ply upon his time and heart. Will he remain self-reliant or will he consider a new energy source? Is God available to him? Is God smart?
Collin knelt down beside Mabel. "I'm really sorry you're sick," he said.
"They don't know for sure. That's why I need the tests."
"Were you a smoker?"
"Yes. Except I quit three years ago."
"You seemed okay yesterday."
"If I don't move around very much, I don't cough, and I don't always cough up blood."
"I have plans to go to Alaska, you know. You could go on the ferry and be much more comfortable."
"No. I'm frightened, and I want to go on a sailboat. It would mean so much to me."
"You don't even like me. You said so yourself."
"I've decided I like you now."
Collin sighed. "I have things to do in Alaska."
"There's nothing in Alaska that you can't get right here. Alaska is overrated."