Monday morning was blustery to the point of concern. I had a bad feeling in the pit of my stomach about our old sailboat tethered to the buoy in front of the house. What if the line didn’t hold? Had we secured it properly- good enough to withstand the tug-of-war it was subject to at that moment?
I’d just put my grandson down for his morning nap when I took a quick glance out the window only to witness just the thing I’d been afraid of: the old girl was on the run! My heart leapt to my throat! I literally gasped! Waves crashed all around, up and over her bow, shoving her this way and that. All I knew was I couldn’t possibly initiate a rescue on my own and if something didn’t happen to rein her in, we’d loose her forever.
I tore down the road to the home of our friend and neighbor, a retired commercial fisherman, and banged on the front door. Our neighbor is as comfortable with the sea as I am with a glass of wine. I knew he’d know exactly what to do.
In a state of panic I begged for help and in a state of complete calm and competence, he explained we would need to do nothing. As we watched, the boat headed south with the current and straight into the sandbar made visible by the receding tide. As the tide went out and out and out, our old boat leaned farther and farther over until she lay flat over on her side, safe and cushioned in the soft sand. We took a rope and tied her to the nearest buoy, leaving plenty of slack in the line. I could stop holding my breath now.
Later that day, the wind died down and the tide came back in. As it did, the boat rose from the sand like she was rising from the dead. It was a relief to see her upright again, riding the waves with ease and tethered to her own buoy, right where she belongs. We are extra careful in securing her lines these days. Something tell us we won’t be so lucky if there’s a next time!