Saturday on the Hard

Some twelve years ago or so I took sailing lessons. My dad, who was a sailor in WWII, spoke fondly of learning how to sail in his training, and after his death I took an interest in learning how to sail. I suppose it was a way to connect with him. It grabbed me, though, and the next year we bought a sailboat.

Sailing is a delight of my summers, but this year it is not to be. The marina where we keep out boat was in need of a new break wall, keeping the marina safe from strong east winds off Lake Ontario. Because of the stay-at-home orders and the fact that our marina is in a park closed by provincial orders. Work on the break wall was halted for a time. The project has only recently been completed. By the time the docks would be put in place, and boats put in the water, we would not have much sailing time left. Consequently, Santa Maria will stay in its cradle on the Marina parking lot, on the hard, along with another 100 or so from our marina.

This has been a strange year, and because of restrictions at the marina and my teaching an intensive course using Zoom meaning a steep learning curve, we have not had much opportunity to get to the boat. We went down a couple of weeks ago to see what was up with Santa Maria. She was doing fine, but we decided we would do a few projects on her this year. Yesterday we took a trip down to the marina and spent the afternoon scrubbing the hall, the deck and the cockpit. A mulberry tree branch hangs over the boat so we spent a good bit of time scrubbing away blue bits.

After an afternoon of cleaning Gwenanne and I both felt a kind of satisfaction. It was an afternoon far removed from a typical summer Saturday, spent on the water. But there was a kind of satisfaction and delight in being by the water, and getting away for a day. In way, it sort of reminds me of visiting someone by Zoom. It’s a far shot from a face to face visit, but far better than nothing at all.

We won’t be down at the marina every weekend, but we have enough projects that need to be done to keep us busy through the summer. It will be a summer on the hard, but in the big scheme of things this is a small loss. We are in a time of doing work differently, doing worship differently, doing everything differently. Even marinas that are open (and ours in not unique in staying closed), are having a unique and different experience. In due course this will all pass, but in the meantime we take joy in different experiences, and look hopefully for another kind of summer next year.

4 thoughts on “Saturday on the Hard

  1. arlavergne says:

    What a delightful and rewarding enterprise!

  2. shoreacres says:

    When I read “mulberry,” you had my full and immediate sympathy! As the saying truly has it, “Been there, and done that.”

    As far as I know, all of our state’s marinas have remained open, although boat ramps have closed here and there, making it difficult for fishermen and fishing guides to keep their businesses afloat. Still, where livelihoods aren’t involved, an enforced pause sometimes is good: at least to the extent that it allows for new projects and new priorities.

    Enjoy your work on Santa Maria. I certainly hope you’re not having to cope with the hundred-degee temperatures we’re enjoying just now. This is the time of year when boat workers long for civilized jobs, like being a greeter in Wal-Mart!

    • agjorgenson says:

      Actually we just had the first rain after about a month of weather in the low to mid-thirties with humidex values taking us to the low forties. So, if I remember correctly, that is within spitting distance of imperial 100. I suspect not too many people have been out on the water with that heat. It certainly has been hot for working on the boat! But you know better than I about that!!

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