Don’t let that innocent smile fool you, this is the face of a master of destruction
Living on the water comes with the inherent risk of losing items to the drink. I just didn’t realize that it was more an inevitability than risk until we moved on board with a three year old and two dogs. Never mind my natural capacity for not paying enough attention to my surroundings (see Getting Our Sea Legs).
Can you tell he’s excited about searching the mud for my keys?
One of the first rules that Dan instituted was “Never have your keys in your hand when getting on and off of the boat.” Alas, he knew me too well. One morning while Dan was at work, I was in the process of getting myself, Carter, and a large bag of laundry off of the boat. As I swung the bag of laundry onto the dock, I released the bag safely…and my car keys right into the water. I was honestly in shock and just stared at the ripples for a few moments before I could even think about anything. Our dock neighbor Gary, who I mentioned in the First Taste of the Cruising Community, graciously attempted to find my keys in the near zero visibility water but wasn’t able to locate them. Now I had to wait for Dan to get home and tell him that I had, in fact, done what he always told me not to do and that now he would have to dive in the disgusting water to find my keys. He only gave me a small “I told you so” and was able to find my keys, along with those of another unfortunate boater from the past.
On our first day in Lantana, the water and I had a rough time together. It was a beautiful day and so I allowed Carter and the dogs to stay out in the cockpit while I made lunch for us down below. I regularly checked on Carter and would find him looking out and the water or petting the dogs. All was well…or so I thought. What Carter was actually doing was taking every loose item in the cockpit and throwing them overboard one by one to see if they would float. This included our hose nozzle, the dogs’ 2 leashes and water dish.
Gavin after his little “swim” and bath. He had a rough day.
I was so angry I could hardly see straight, so I sent Carter to his room before I overreacted and went back to making lunch. That’s when I heard a very strange noise from outside. I went into the cockpit to investigate and found only Winston topside looking straight down off of the transom at the water. Gavin had attempted to jump onto the dock to catch some landing ducks and, as his coordination is about as advanced as mine, fell straight into the water. I quickly climbed down the dock ladder and called him over to me as he sloppily dog-paddled his way around the boat. I’m sure the two of us would have been quite the sight to see as I had to get in waist deep to hoist him out as he flailed desperately trying to get out of the water, which he hates. He was none too happy with me as I had to spray him down with fresh water again.
At least I was able to rescue my shoe!
Our current tally is as follows:
1 bottle of lemon juice (thrown by Carter)
1 dog dish (thrown by Carter)
2 dog leashes (thrown by Carter)
1 hose nozzle (thrown by Carter)
1 small toy car (accidently driven in by Carter)
Dropped and Recovered
1 fishing net (bumped in by a friend)
1 car key (dropped by Michele)
1 wet dog (jumped/fell in)
1 shoe (knocked off by Michele)
1 car key
I think that makes the score Davey Jones 6: Us 1: Tie 4. We’re hoping to even the score with some fishing and lobster diving in the near future.
People on the west coast of Florida have the advantage of seeing the sun set over the ocean, but there’s something about an ocean sunrise that leaves me in awe. Maybe it’s because I am so rarely able to watch the sun rise or maybe it’s the reminder of my quiet early morning drives to work with Carter half asleep in the backseat. Sunrise may not always be as spectacular as the reds and oranges of sunset, but I love to watch the quiet beauty of the world waking up to the pinks and blues of the morning.
Last week was my first opportunity to watch the sun rise in our new marina in Lantana. While I’m not usually up in time to see it, I was glad to be awake on this beautiful morning.
The first of many wipe-outs as he got used to wearing shorts and flip-flops
We’ve now survived our first month on the water! Things are starting to feel more like home around the boat and we are slowly uncovering all of the mini-projects that will be keeping us busy over the next few months. All of us are adjusting fairly well, but it feels like we’re all toddlers learning how to walk again on the boat.
My knee-eye coordination is somewhat lacking
Living on a moving object tends to be more dangerous than you’d think…especially for the less coordinated like myself. Going on and off the dock seems to be my most precarious for me, as I tend to misjudge the height of the stanchions and give my knees a solid beating. The first week on board I was sure that Dan or I were going to give ourselves a concussion with the number of times we both hit our heads on various areas of the boat. We didn’t end up with one, but Dan did procure our first boat-related broken toe as he slipped while getting into the cockpit. Chock that one up to getting our sea legs, I guess.
Judging by the nasty color of Dan’s toe, we’re pretty sure it broke.
Carter’s had his own injuries from our new life. He is still adjusting to losing the extra protection of always wearing pants. His knees were in pretty rough shape after his first few high speed wipe-outs in shorts. He’s started to get more cautious about his running speed on uneven surfaces, but not without learning the lesson the hard way a few times.
Battle wounds from the kamikaze fire ants
Last weekend, we went out to Indiantown to get another few boxes off of the trailer (almost done unpacking!). As we were walking back to our car, Carter suddenly let out a panicked cry “Mommy! Ants!” He had stomped his way right into a fire ant hill and the ants were on a mission to get him off. And they didn’t say please. Dan grabbed Carter and started swatting off any ant he could see as Carter was crying “get them off, get them off!” Those little guys really held on tight too. We finally got all of them off and Carter’s clothes thoroughly checked before I was able to talk to Carter about it.
“Carter, did you know you were stepping in an ant hill, honey?”
“Yea, I did.”
“Why did you step on it? Those ants didn’t like that very much.”
“I just wanted to help them make their hole bigger, Mommy. It was too small.”
My poor, sweet little boy.