Definition: (1) a distinct part of the sea that can be seen from the shore; (2) a position distant from the shore; (3) in the offing: (a) at a distance but within sight, (b) in the near future.
Example: Mary collected her thoughts and realized that a confrontation was necessarily in the offing
Rarity: rare, bottom 40% of words (Merriam-Webster)
Etymology: early 17th century, off + ing
Why I like this word: The main use of this word is in the phrase: “in the offing;” which is a rather useful phrase for speaking both about physical objects within sight and about things happening the near future. Overall, it is a versatile and useful word.