My beloved father-in-law was an old WWII navy guy. He was a master mechanic (you guys, is that the right title?) on the Hornet down there in the South Pacific. It was a horrific time to be in the armed services but I believe that he used to say his scariest experiences involved tropical storms, not kamikaze Japanese pilots. He went on to marry Grandma Sally and raise 10 (count ’em) kids, including the Twinz of Terror, who were right smack in the middle as numbers five and six.

I met the gumper many years after his WWII experiences and I spent a lot of time with him at the beloved old moldy old Houghton Lake cabin. He welcomed me into his family and became one of the beach urchins’ granddaddies. And I remember a few occasions when he would nip into a bit of Triple Sec and become a wee bit teary eyed about the big war and all of the pilots that got berthed with him until their next mission and never came back.

But I’m kind of digressing here. There were always all kinds of boats at Houghton Lake. Not to mention, when I first started going up there, snowmobiles and dirt bikes and things. Anything with a motor. I remember Grandpa Garth saying, “Some men have 50 foot boats. I have fifty feet of boat.” And a whole bunch of hoists and trailers and whatever to go with all of those boats.

Today, the GG took The Tan Boat, which is one of those old Houghton Lake boats, over to the Brimley State Park to launch it into the water and drive it back over here to the Moomincabin. He futzed with the engine all afternoon. It has been problematical in some way that I do not understand but he thought that he had it fixed. Dogmomster helped him take it over there. He waved her off (i.e., success!) and when she got back, we sat down on the bank watching various small boats go by thinking stuff like, “There’s the GG”. And then it wouldn’t be him.

It turned out that the derned engine overheated almost immediately after he gave Dogmomster the go-ahead to leave the boat launch. He tried to call her but she was out of service at that point. Why he didn’t try to call meeeee is a puzzle. I could’ve figgered out how to get hold of Dogmomster. Instead, he *rowed* the entire four miles back from the state park. He could’ve pulled in at the Porters and we could’ve picked him up there. Porters? Are you there? Even if not, we could’ve left a sticky note on the boat saying something like, “Engine is dead. We’ll pick it up tomorrow. — GG and KW.” Whatever.

Anyway… All is well. What is the GG doing now? He is out for a kayak ride, of course. At least kayaks do not have motors. At least not the one he is in.

Good night. Don’t let the derechos bite.

4 Responses to “Boatventures”

  1. Uncly Uncle Says:

    Water pump not working. Gotta take the damn think apart.

  2. le Marquis Says:

    Nice post! I especially liked the bit about your father-in-law. I just wish that Mr. Bill would occasionally come out the hero in one of your posts. That mean old Mr. Hand, or is it Ms. Anne, keeps on pushing him down.

  3. kayak woman Says:

    Oh no, he was definitely a hero in this post even if it didn’t sound that way. He was none the worse for wear for doing all that rowing. Actually I think he enjoyed it, along with the ensuing shower and ‘hattan. But it is kind of business as usual for a Courtois person because they are always messing about in boats and with their motors and I have learned to sort of ignore all of that for the most part. Unless we are heading for a big rock or whatever. The GG *is* a hero in may ways, for example, in cleaning out my mom’s house. That doesn’t necessarily become clear in my [hopefully somewhat cryptic] posts about that endeavor. But he has been driving the whole thing and I could not have done it without him. Hero? Yes. Not sure that he wants to be called out in that way on my blahg, though. 😉

  4. Paulette Says:

    GG= greathearted, kind-hearted

    What is it with boats? Boat owners are always tinkering with the engines that sputter and guffaw…..;-)