Saturday, January 03, 2009

Rowing with one oarlock

As a teenager, I took several adventures while on Pratt's Island. One stands out.

On a sunny afternoon after lunch, I went down to the dock and walked down the ramp to the floating dock. I climbed into the swaying rented rowboat and set out from shore. I began to row around Cozy Harbor and as I moved the oars which were heavy as they plied the deep blue waters, I saw the houses from the shore pass by and the seagulls flying overhead me. I leaned back on the bench in the rowboat and pushed with all of my might. It was difficult using the two oars as the boat made little bits of progress.

I weaved in between some big white glistening sailboats that were moored off the docks of several of the cottages. As I approached underneath one of these boats with a big flying bridge, I heard the metal oarlock begin to wince in pain and creak slowly and then heard a giant, SNAP, as it fell onto the boat floor.

I was only twenty feet from shore in the middle of Cozy Harbor. Surrounded by the tall boats in all directions. I looked up at the bright sun of the afternoon with the blue skies and lightly puffed clouds. I moved around in circles as I put my oars in and out of the waters. Hearing the oars make their swishing sound and hearing the water drip off the end of the oars. I did not hear the sound of anyone that afternoon. I was out in the middle of "nowhere"

I knew I had to make it in by dark so my parents would not be worried about me. As I circled around the shore going in endless circles trying to make my destination secure , I felt insecure and yet took this as an adventure.
In my life, when I have faced pickles, I move about taking steps, even though they seem insignificant at the time. Knowing that eventually I am going to get home.

I did not know when that afternoon, I would approach the dock. I kept rowing for what seemed like hours, trying to make my destination. I did eventually.

What came out of it was a story that I can tell my friends and family of when I was a teenager on an island in Maine and how I always have an extra set of oars to lend to those setting out from shore.

Lesson learned is you never know when an extra set of oars or an oarlock may be needed in our journeys of life!!!

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