Monday, February 4, 2013

Fear factor

Most European catamarans have hatches in the floor of the boat so that if your
boat turns upside down ("goes turtle"), you have a way to escape. What the...?!
The kids are going through a stage where they are afraid to go to their cabins alone. This predates the boat. At my parents' house, it applied to the bathroom two rooms away from the kitchen where everyone was gathered. It could be related to the "Bloody Mary" discussion started by someone in Conrad's first grade class. Of course, they have no problem racing down the dock on their Razor scooters, looking backwards, and racing down the ramps at top speed. Kids are no better at gauging risk than the rest of us.

Being on the boat sets a whole new bunch of fears in motion. When we first moved aboard, our oldest was freaked out by the noises on the boat. Matt explained that those were the bilge pumps that pump water out so that the boat won't sink. Conrad said something like, "Wait a second...the boat could actually sink?"

There are some real sources of anxiety, if not fear (most don't usually involve death or serious injury). We are apparently in the lightning capital of the world with a 64-foot lightning rod directly over our heads. The biggest risk with lightning strikes (besides being scared witless) is frying our wiring and electronics. There is a catamaran in our marina that had that happen before the current owners bought her.

On the way to our current marina, Matt had to traverse the very crowded New River, sharing some very narrow passageways with some very big boats. There is one spot where a jetty pushes you into other boats while you wait for the bridge to be raised. When he got to the marina, he was told to back the boat into a very narrow slip with a brand new Beneteau Sense on one side and about 6 inches to spare. He did great but there were white knuckles and other clenched body parts the whole time.

There are a lot more firsts to come and fears to overcome, for all of us. In the meantime, who knew that we had a glass bottom boat? At least our escape hatches are not at the water line--yikes! Oh, here's a Tweet from sv Full Monty as they crossed over from Jamaica to Panama:


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