Practice makes perfect, I hope

Published 11:53 am Wednesday, March 15, 2023

By Jan Penton-Miller


I was somewhere in that state between wakefulness and dreamland this morning when I heard the familiar tap-tap-tap on my bedroom door. My son, Ryan, lives just down the street, and I recognized the sound as his.

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   “Mom, do you want to sleep in, or go on a morning boat ride?”

 In my excitement of owning a new boat and thinking anytime was a good time to be on the water I forgot a couple of things. Probably the most important was the fact that it’s much colder on the water. But add that to the wind that occurs when skimming across the lake, and I definitely didn’t have on warm enough clothes. 

   Secondly, the wind was whipping pretty briskly, which made it more difficult to maneuver the craft, especially for new boaters. These things didn’t really register with either of us, so we hopped in our little pontoon and left the dock.

    It was early, and no one else was out on the water. That might have given us a little hint that the conditions weren’t great for boating, but I was just happy to have the lake all to the two of us. 

     After a few chilly moments we had sped down the water and positioned ourselves to enjoy a beautiful sunrise. Ryan pulled out his camera to capture the moment. Soon the colors began to change from light pinks and oranges to more brilliant hues as the sun broke through the cloud cover on the horizon. He took shot after shot as we sat quietly watching the new day’s beginning.

     For a moment we forgot the cold and focused on the beauty. Geese flew overhead and helped to create the lovely scene. The boat drifted with the wind, and I realized that I was really cold so Ryan put the boat in gear and we began our short trip back to the marina.

Getting out of dock wasn’t too bad, but getting back in was a different story. I’m more careful about jumping and putting myself in a position to slip and fall since I have two titanium joints, so Ryan was trying to get in the slip and jump out to secure the boat. I tried to circle back around and dock while he jumped out, but the wind was blowing so hard that I was unsuccessful.

     Thankfully, a nice guy named Bill was out walking his dog and graciously came to our aid. Ryan pulled the boat in, and I threw the rope to Bill. From that point things went a little more smoothly, but did take a little spill when I tried to hold onto a seat and the top collapsed. If someone was watching they probably got a good laugh, but I’m sure practice makes perfect. I hope.