Does Putting on Boat Shoes, Make You a Boater, and Qualified to be Called Such?

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Galaxy’s admission about us (the crew), “knowing nothing about boating” is not entirely true. I grew up a city girl by Boston Harbor, but summered on a lake/pond my entire life.  As kids, row boats & canoes were a part of our everyday existence. Fearless we were, and if we could not get permission to take one out, albeit; being handed the oars or paddles, we would take it anyway and paddle with our hands & feet. Now, mind you, we weren’t on lake Michigan, no, only a very smallish lake, which I am sure at the deepest was 15-20 ft, if that. We did eventually buy another camp on a larger pond, nothing fancy, no running hot water, so, boiling water to do the dishes, and baths in the lake were ok by us, as it belonged to us. It was known as a great fishing spot, as well as being very deep & murky, full of snappers, large, old ones, lake moccasins, lots of large mouth bass, perch & fabulous bullfrogs. This small plot of land was alongside a Herring run, which, when they ran upstream as they do, into the pond, the bass would be there waiting for them, and we, in turn, would be there waiting for the bass. We also found this fortuitous, as my Mom’s parents hailed from Newfoundland & they fondly called themselves ‘Herring chokers’.  So this spot, we felt, was really meant for us. We loved life on the water, even if only along the shore, and everyday centered around that water.

      We did eventually expand our boating wings to Sunfish.  And I have to admit that many a Sunfish sail and mast ended up at the bottom of that pond, until we mastered sailing well enough to not “deep six” anymore sails & masts to a deep, murky resting place.

     Eventually my parents would buy a motor boat for fishing, water skiing and just fun riding.  We loved it.  But, for ‘peace & quiet’, I always took the rowboat out, especially early morning in thick fog, where one could not see a finger in front of you.  Best fishing ever!

For mischievous ‘peace & quiet’ my friends and I (6 or 7 of us) would all load into the row boat, again, no paddles, and make our way out to the middle, then all stand & rock the boat, much to my elderly neighbors chagrin. He & his missus would be hollering out at us to “come in!” or “I’ll call the police”, which to his credit, he never did , nor did he ever tell my mother.

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     I would have the pleasure through the years of motoring & sailing with friends, once even sailing Vancouver Bay in BC for a week in a old wooden 50′ schooner, which was the thrill of a lifetime for this city girl at 19, who had only ever sailed my little Sunfish.

     Now, I know these childhood antics in no way qualify me to crew a large trawler, but that is OK.  As the desire to learn, the ability of a quick study, and having some awesome friends to say, “Go for it, y’all can do it!”, a couple of good USCG qualified captain friends who are willing to teach us, and we will learn. 

 “Step into those shoes, name one persistence, and the other determination.

Walk omnipotently, and do not stop until you reach success.

You’ll know when you are there, as success has no sex,

and doesn’t recognize failure.”

 Meme

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