Wednesday, 11 July 2007

"Not waving but Drowning"

At last the boat is removed to Lake Windermere. D and I decide to make a trip there on Monday, as we are both off work. Relying on a map drawn by G we are forced to ferret around asking numerous people, most of which turn out to be visitors like ourselves.

As we have no dinghy, we borrow the little boat Bonito, of which G`s fellow seafarer friend has said that we could borrow when he is not using it. We find it, among others propped up by a bar stool. We roll it down to the secluded jetty, and it slips effortlessly into the water. D gives me the rope, I am to walk along the boarded ramp and tie it to the pole, as I have no idea how to tie a knot which is secure but can easily be shaken loose, I simply hold onto it. D climbs in, then asks me to follow suit, which I do, very aware that I could fall into the drink.

I sit down, water is rushing in apace, and D is using a sawn off milk carton to bale out the water when I notice that the bungs are out (Maybe this is why Gs friend has it on an angle, to let the water drain out when it rains!!!!) D hurriedly replaces them, then bales out the rest of the water. He pulls, and pulls and pulls............. but the outboard motor refuses to kick in, meanwhile we are veering towards some bushes, and have to duck to see what we are doing. I have an uneasy feeling that I don`t trust this person. After using the oar to push himself away from the foliage, D tries again.....I am bored to the point of murder.....He decides to row.

All is calm, until we notice a kind of pleasure cruiser is heading bang in our direction, luckily D knows that "You always go starboard, so that you avoid eachother." However, when it passes there`s a hell of a buffetting going on.

I am relaxed once more as we navigate around Bell Island. D is very red in the face.(G has assured us "You can`t miss it) There are scores upon scores of white boats with blue on, an odd red one. We notice one of them is named "Don`t Panic" I can just imagine the scenario back home "Did you enjoy your trip to the boat?" "Yes." "Did you sleep on the boat?" "No, because we couldn`t bloody well find it!" After much weaving about, we find it.

We have the same old palaver, lining up the little boat alongside (What G likes to call the tender) I jump aboard first and am busily tying the rope to a hook, as I turn, I notice that D is stretched to capacity, feet in the little boat, hands in white knuckle position and eyes like organ stops. I reach for the side and pull him back in. Maybe I should have left him, it may have added 3 inches to his height. When he regains his composure, he throws a carrier bag over the side, it holds sandwiches, pop and crisps. He clambers over and stands on the bag, on my cheese and onion crisps.

I am starting to suspect that everything we are doing is more by good luck than good management. My nerves are shot to hell. D puts the kettle on for a coffee, I am so paranoid by now that I don`t trust him to do that....."What if he hasn`t checked the gas stove properly/ where is the fire extinguisher/ We have to get back around the lake yet" etc I imagine some little man on the shore saying to Petunia "There`s someone waving from a little sailing dingy" D comments that "It would be better if we had someone with us who knew what they were doing." I reply "Yes, instead of two of us who don`t" We laugh, more out of desperation that anything else.

After Much binding in the Marsh, we decide to row back to the harbour and have a look around the shops, maybe have a little lunch. More confidently this time, we unhook the "Tender" and begin our journey back, after some time, D remembers that he hasn`t taken the bungs out of the boat. We go back, I have the job of scrambling aboard. We notice another couple lounging on a much larger boat, I bet they are having a good laugh at us.

After we replace the Bonito back on his bar stool, we walk up a little lane and around the corner towards the harbour. As we sit on the front with our ice cream, we can`t help but notice, rather sheepishly, that our "Secluded" mooring was in full view of everyone. Well, If they`re laughing at us they are leaving someone else alone.
Land lubbers ahoy...but at the same time we are quite proud of ourselves, we have learned quite alot from "Throwing ourselves in at the deep end."

No comments: