Life on the water brings with it a whole new skill set, as well as an entirely different vocabulary, like port and starboard, instead of left and right. It takes time to get it all straight.
On one of our first outings last summer, we cruised into a foreign port and radioed the harbormaster to ask for a transient slip. Then we told him that our boat had a 3’ beam.
There was a pause. Then the radio crackled. “Uh, we don’t have slips for boats that size.”
The “beam” is the boat’s width.
I can only imagine what he was thinking. “Are these people in a kayak?? Are they on crack?? Are they utter morons??”
Utter morons- that would be accurate. Or let’s just say “newbies.” 3’ is the draft—how much of the boat is underwater.
To prepare for season two, I took Carefree Boat’s navigation class, essentially “Navigation 101” for new boaters. Captain Rich taught us how to read a chart and plot a course. Most importantly, I learned how to pinpoint my location if I’m lost and the GPS goes out. That would have been helpful during my wintertime girls (boat) trip in Florida (see my post under “Destinations”).
It was an incredibly useful, practical, hands on course. We got to use the tools and practice plotting on charts—sort of like science lab back in high school, but minus the teenage angst, acne, and worries about grades and SAT scores.
I have my custom fit boat-to-shore attire, and now I have my heading. It’s time to rock and roll out on the waves for 2019. Bring it on!