Wednesday, December 16, 2009

The Days of Christmas - Number 6 - Favourite Things

OK, enough of the seriousness for a little while. All too preachy maybe, but those things really piss me off.
A favourite thing.
It's a warm summer morning, there's hardly a breath of wind, the sun is bright and hot and the sky is that pale blue that spells heat. There's a light, white haze so that visibility is not great. We get aboard and cast off, motor out and hoist the main and the yankee. It's hardly worth it but we're in no hurry. Friends drift up alongside as we head southwest across the bay. We drag cushions up from down below, chat to our friends across the gap between the boats and slowly trickle along. The water is glassy and there's just enough wind to create tiny eddies as the water passes along the hull and over the rudder. The crew lounge on the deck to leeward, in the shade of the coach house. The camera appears and we take pictures of our friends and they of us. The day is sleep inducing, so still, so hot, so quiet. Motor boats zip across the water leaving wakes that shimmer and disappear in the heat mirage.
Lunch appears and we graze and chat, children disappear below and sleep away from the heat. Finally I find myself alone. The whole crew are asleep, leaving me to watch the boat. I must have drifted off in a reverie, becoming aware, with a start, that I'm about to run down a little aluminium runabout. A scrabble, the helm hard over and we slide past with appropriate apologies. Too close that one, too close.
As the afternoon slides on the breeze slowly increases. The land is heating and the convection is dragging in a sea breeze. The boat comes alive, the water hisses along the rail and the bow wave whitens. Our destination begins to rise from the sea, we can just lay it on this tack. Reluctantly I call the crew from their dream sleep. They stumble on deck, to the cool freshness of the breeze. Little gusts funnel off the land as we round up and drop sail. A peaceful perfect day.

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