From Sea to Sea

I remember sailing this leaky, 17′ day boat, my father’s dream. We’d go out when the wind quit around 1900 hours and Dad said “put down the centerboard, we’re gonna go like hell.” Uh, no, Dad. Let’s limp back to the dock.

The wind whispered otherwise. That boat broke our dock during bad weather several times and real sailors brought it back. They already knew who owned it and where we lived.

Another sailor tried to teach me how to fish. My brother and I took a ship across the Channel from Dover to Calais. With a guide, my brother and I did Class 5 rapids in the Adirondacks when we were young. I flipped out of the raft in an instant. The other raft saved me and afterwards we were stuck in an eddy and almost died. I didn’t know that until later, at lunch on an island and I passed the guides talking about how close we all came to death. I think that was the best canned chicken soup I ever had.

My husband and I went down a river in Texas with a guide at Class 3 rapids, years later. At 3,000 cfm (Army Corps of Engineers had to release excess water from a dam due to rainfall) we did a five-hour trip in two.

Sometimes I just make it through. I do get seasick and recommend sea bands, a pressure point wristband so you don’t need Dramamine or equivalent.

I made it through for my greatest challenge, marriage, 12 years ago. I asked a highly decorated Navy Captain (USN, Ret.) to marry us. He wrote our vows and took on the challenge. When he died we went to Annapolis to see him interred and his widow got to meet SecNav and received a coin.

I think my sea-worthiness is worth some sea-sickness. Ahoy, matey! Dee

ps You’re not getting married at sea, Miss M (it’s the last time I’ll be able to call you Miss), and I will not be there to meet your betrothed but you are in my heart and I want to see photos at Thanksgiving! Love from Cousin Dee

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