Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Don’t Do What I Did!

April 1, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

Our boat has jokingly been called the “Bodega Boat.”  I can’t resist stocking our 35-foot Carver, whose real name is the J.D. LauRy, with too much food and too many “flying projectiles,” as my husband refers to the nautical trinkets I’ve strategically placed around the cabin.

During a caravan of eight boats taking a trip from the East Rockaway Yacht Club to the Haverstraw Marina, our boat was sitting rather low in the water. It was holding three kids, a few crock pots, two dozen sweatshirts, scooters, bicycles, a stocked freezer, an assortment of movies and board games…I’m sure you get the weighty picture.  If there was ever a “Let’s Make a Deal” for boaters, I would definitely win the prize behind Hatch Number Two!

Our kids were anxious for the caravan to reach its destination, where the marina’s pool held the promise of relief from the day’s scorching heat and humidity.  We hadn’t traveled very far, however, when the transmission in the first boat of our caravan began to overheat, halting everyone’s forward progress. As we were idling near the Statue of Liberty, the Coast Guard quickly approached the lead boat and boarded.  Rather than a floating band of terrorists, the Coast Guard found one frustrated captain, one frazzled mother, and three unhappy kids (the youngest child, suffering from a stomachache, promptly threw up on the shoes of the first officer to board).  Needless to say, there was no need to elevate the threat warning in New York City!

With the lead boat repaired, our journey resumed.  Eight boats arrived safely and 15 kids streamed off the boats to check out the pool. They quickly returned with crestfallen expressions, as the pool was a putrid sea of green and was closed until further notice (well beyond the time frame in which every parent in our group heard the same whines of “I’m hot…I’m roasting” at least a few dozen times).  Books, board games, crayons and coloring books were removed from the J.D. LauRy, along with a few scooters and bicycles.  Our boat was sitting a bit higher in the water, and I sat a lot prouder for being so well-prepared.

Our hope of poolside margaritas at poolside dashed, our group decided to travel further up the Hudson for lunch the next day. Once again, the J.D. LauRy pulled away from a dock with a full load of passengers, though no one was complaining as we admired the beautiful scenery. Our happy hum soon became a chorus of concern, however, as the most ominous black clouds I have ever seen were chasing us up the Hudson River.

With nowhere to dock in time, it became abundantly clear that we would soon be caught in the maelstrom.  The rain was torrential and visibility was quickly reduced to zero (along with our speed).  Lightening was hitting all around us, stunning even the children into silence.

Perhaps it is my Italian heritage, but in times of worry and concern…mangia!  If it was all going to end on the Hudson River, we were at least going out with full stomachs, so I assembled chicken cutlet sandwiches and passed them up through the hatch accompanied by deviled eggs (it is amazing how much people eat when they think it is likely to be their last meal).   My friend was traveling with us, and she likes to tidy up in time of worry, so she began cleaning the boat from bow to stern with a rag and cleaner in hand. While the captain handled the navigation to port, accompanied by the collective sigh of relief from all aboard, my friend and I made sure that the J.D. LauRy was spotlessly clean and that its allegedly over-stocked food supplies were much lighter.

Though we should have been less anxious to dine on the waterfront and more diligent about checking the weather report, in the end, we were all safe and learned that accumulating a load of chicken cutlets might just pay off in the long run!Yvette Hayes boat

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