The boat rears and bucks, on its tether to the underwater ground. The wind will shift later, around to the west, and all will be placid, more or less. But for now, the tide risen over the sometimes-protecting eastern rocks, it’s all about waves, the boat an agile thing, demonstrating its paces.
For those of a certain age (something like middle) – and perhaps only in the United States, and maybe Canada? – going to the supermarket as a child, companion of one’s mother, or other adult, meant passing the mechanical bucking horses outside the entrance to the store. Child-sized, with saddles and stirrups, ready to go. Put in a quarter, or probably a nickel, when I was small enough to actually ride them, and up and down, forward and back, the mechanical horse would give you a ride. It was always over too soon, and you wished for another coin in the slot, patting the sturdy neck and face of your sometime steed. It was the best thing about going to the store, easily rivaling the gumball machines, or the search for the prize buried somewhere in the CrackerJacks. The motion was fun, and we always wanted more.
Today, as the boat bounces, I’m thinking about that. Endless quarters in the slot. Who ever would have thought that I would come to complain about this. Child who went to every carnival, favorite ride The Scrambler, turning, bouncing, changing direction at all moments. The motion of this boat is something that you would be hard-pressed to achieve, for whatever cost, on land. Physical therapy devices come to mind, none of them with the stamina, or simple ease, of my berth, in the anchored wind. Even the cash laid out for the boat could not compete with the hourly cost of this much motion from any other source.
It’s a gift. Remember that!
Sandy Ward said:
What a great description and perspective! Of course this brought to mind the motion we experienced in your previous boat one night in Rye Harbor in 2008. In my journal I wrote of being inside a washing machine. I also recall the complex motions of that boat at anchor in Hampton Harbor, “the night the boat danced.”
Both of those experiences we shared were ones that stay in one’s memory… So much learning on that trip! You were such a trooper, with all those “learning experiences.” I think of them often, as well as the crazy fun, and so many smiles.
For anybody who is inclined, Sandy’s article “The Night the Boat Danced” was published in Messing about in Boats several years ago, and is reprinted here: http://www.nonotuck.us/sandy/writing.html
Sandy, thanks so much for saying hi!