Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Run Aground


Anyone who has spent any time on the water knows what it's like to run aground. Back in the days before everything came with GPS and fish finders depth finders, running aground was very common, at least among the people I hung out with in my youth which included me, myself, my sisters and I .

I was responsible for the safe transport (via boat) of my two younger sisters to and from the Islander motel's pool, aka the place we spent every waking hour of every summer. My father had an 18-foot skiff with so much engine on the back we could catch gnats in our teeth going full throttle with lips pursed and jaws clenched. That thing would fly.

Unless of course one ran aground or got hung in a crab pot. Proudly I can say I do not recall running aground, but sadly I confess to getting hung in a crab pot or three, which is a nightmare story for another day... as is the time the outboard came off the boat entirely and but for the cables linking it to the boat would have been spending the rest of its life in the bottom of Queens Creek.


Technically the boats in these pictures are more washed up than run aground, but I don't have any photos of boats aground.

Just nightmares memories.


My very first experience running aground was when my father bought a brand new boat with an inboard/outboard engine. He couldn't wait to take us for a ride.

So into the boat my mother, sisters and I piled, grinning from ear to ear, eagerly awaiting our first "real" boat ride. After years of rowboats and skiffs that were propelled with the bottom end of a crab net pushed into the mud by the person standing on the bow, a "real boat" was a novelty.

Wide open we flew down the creek past Cow Point, until the whole shebang came to a screeching, grinding, brain-scrambling halt. He had run aground.

Not only that, but he had damaged the lower unit on the engine, which meant we were stranded and needed a tow home--provided anyone capable of towing was out and around us at that time.

I've successfully blocked out any additional details, because that's how I survive, but after that he took a boating/navigational course and soon learned how to stay in the channel and avoid such traumatic unexpected outcomes.

Running aground occurs on the water and in every day life. Sometimes we hit an unexpected hurdle that causes us to come grinding to a stop. With any luck, we pick ourselves up, brush ourselves off and take a navigational course try to keep moving and doing the best we can.

Have you ever run aground?

15 comments:

foolery said...

Every day at 2:45.

Ann Marie said...

Red... on Right.. on Return!!!!!

Kate said...

Yep. Recently. But I'm searching for a navigational course to help steer me back into the channel. I don't want to be stuck in the middle of the creek without a tow! :-)

deborah said...

Twice a week, never on the same days. I also run amok. I don't run wild now, I'm too old and tired.

Jamie said...

Sometimes I find myself up a certain creek without a paddle. One evening returning from a fishing trip, my dad and uncle came across someone not familiar with the location of a sandbar near the marina. Theyoffered a tow, my dad got out to help push the boat off the sandbar and as he was attempting to climb back in, my uncle took off, leaving my dad standing on a sandbar at the mouth of Broad Creek. When my uncle returned he was using the spotlight and calling "Albert, you out there?"

These Nine Acres said...

Where do I take a navigational course on life? Or more specifically, raising kids. I need one of those!

Trisha said...

Wow! Talk about timing! I am in the middle of "running aground" here and am struggling to figure out how to get back into the water.

Diane said...

Metephorically? More times than I can count. In a boat? Never!

Noe Noe Girl...A Queen of all Trades. said...

I've runaground quiet a few times in my day....I find back peddling helps.

Daryl said...

and I thought the title said Run AROUND ... and I eagerly clicked in to hear what, how, why .. this was more interesting ... CDub was very careful when taking us over to Gwynn's to see the sign not to run aground or around ...

Is your uncle Spanish? Does he need preping? WV is preptio

Pueblo girl said...

Am aground right now.

big hair envy said...

My brain ran aground several years ago. Do you think I can get a tow for that?;)

Meg @ Soup Is Not A Finger Food said...

What Diane said. I've never run aground in a boat... but metaphorically, yeah, a few times, but I like to think I've emerged stronger for it. Or I might be kidding myself, who's to say.

mom x 2 said...

There is nothing worse then being stranded with a damaged lower unit, and no tow. Except of course if you are in the middle of a swiftly moving river.

Running aground's not so bad if it means you aren't sinking.

Is it July 2011 yet?

Fighting Mermaid said...

Your post brings back such fond memories :)