Monday, July 21, 2008

How do I dock thee, let me count the ways....

So far, we have docked Speakeasy in nine harbors.  Every single experience has jangled my nerves and increased my blood pressure to bursting. Sailing eighty miles across the lake may paralzse.  (I just asked Mark --who is blogging about the loon -- how to spell paralzye and he responded, "Just like it sounds." Right!) So sailing across the lake may frighten me, but docking has become my downfall. Just imagine having to park your car in nine different parking spots. In some you have to pull up to the right, in others you have to pull up to the left.  Some are shallow.  Some have projecting rocks.  Then add the river's current going from west to east. Don't forget winds blowing from east to west. Or north to south or, hell, wind can blow from any direction.  Then add people sitting in their boats drinking beer and margaritas with nothing better to do than watch your antics.  Did I mention that you cannot just put on the brakes?  You have to put the boat into neutral and glide into the slip.  The slip is usually a mere 4 feet wider than your boat.  And remember the boat isn't really a car.  It's more like a school bus that floats.  But without brakes.  So docking has become my undoing.  I want to be at the helm because then Mark can race around the boat flinging lines at harbor dockhands and unsuspecting passersby while fending off hitting the wooden dock with a fender.  I'm never sure how to angle the boat and when to start gliding.  I pray for no wind, no current and at least three people on the dock who know what they are doing.  So far, except for Pentwater, something has always gone amiss.  But we persevere. Maybe next year we'll learn how to anchor.  
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