23 April 2007

That Water is Cold

About six months ago, there was a thread on Sailing Anarchy about falling off of the dock. I kind of scoffed...I mean, how do you fall off a dock? Do people routinely fall off of sidewalks? Do they fall out of bed? I can understand that every once in a while, people walk off of docks while engaged in conversation, but sheesh, falling off a dock?

Well, you've all heard the familiar quotation: "Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall." or as Shakespeare said, "Pride must have a fall."

And, fall I did. Not all the way in, but in one particular way, much much worse.

My 19 month old son and I were going to the boat to get her ready for next week's Opening Day festivities. I was holding his hand when I tossed the diaper bag into the cockpit. Next thing I know, I was leaning on the boat in a most uncomfortable bruising way and dangling this little kid by his right arm in the water. Just a little dip up to the diaper or so.

I have tried to recreate this in my mind to figure out what happened. I wasn't trying to get into the boat. I didn't trip. I just fell. While standing there. I guess I could blame a powerboat wake or something but I've stood upright in much bouncier conditions than this could have been.

Ultimately, all was well. The kid got a nice salt water bath and finally got that view of the mussels under the dock he always wanted. I have a bruise and a blog-story. And, most importantly, we both have that dock-fall under our belts so we don't need to worry about it any more.

8 comments:

AdriftAtSea said...

Be careful, you may have just jinxed yourself.

EVK4 said...

I think the point was that I had jinxed myself in the SA thread six months ago. Maybe I misread what I wrote...I'll re-read it.

Joe Rouse said...

I have had students walk right off the docks into the bay. I'm always taken aback when it happens.

oreneta said...

I have never fallen off a dock YET, but the only time I have fallen off the boat was when it was at the dock. Twice.

Tillerman said...

That's the way to raise a future sailor - throw him off the dock and let him sink or swim.

Seriously though, this is why when I worked as a mean old head sailing instructor for a junior sailing program I had a rule that the kids always had to wear their PFD's when on the docks.

"Raps" said...

I had a crew member fall off the dock last year. The guy was 6'5" and every time he cam on board he would break a stansion. Anyway, I was backing out of the slip and he was on the dock about ready to jump on board, when he jumped and missed. In the drink he went. The slip was overlooked by a outdoor patio of a restaurant. So suddenly there were gasps from the 50+ people on the patio. I stopped the boat and jumped on the dock. Andy was fine.. he was holding the side of the dock and used the stern ladder to get back onboard. Cheers and clapping followed from the growing audience.

Pat said...

Oh, it could be lots worse... such as falling off the boat, bouncing off the dock, and then into the water. That's when I learned the value of low-profile floating slip piers where you can get out of the water with one functioning hand.

Carol Anne said...

Of course, there were several people trying to haul Pat out of the water, and they were all grabbing the wrist that had been shattered from bouncing off the pier. And one of them was the sailing instructor who had given us lessons a few months before. Fortunately, he didn't recognize us.