27 November 2007

Playground on the Sea

This is going to sound odd but every time I touch down on the dock, I get a sense of relief. Sort of a "whew, thank god we made it back" feeling. It's not like I'm in a perpetual state of "we're doomed" fear while sailing but it's nice to be back safely with minimal fiberglass damage.

So, we usually celebrate with a tasty snack and G-rated beverage. And relax for a while. Unfortunately, kids don't relax well and I sail with kids quite frequently. The only solution is to turn the boat into a playground. Usually, it's as simple as using the foredeck hatch or cabin handrails as gymnastics platforms but Sunday it got slightly better and more complicated.

Ingredients: Bosun's chair, jib halyard, twelve foot length of lucky gold line, kid.

With this technique, a kid can climb from the mast to the forestay, kick off the shrouds and swing over the water, or just climb back and forth. Lots can happen. After the pictures were taken, it was refined even further by tying the lucky gold line to the forestay and chair, minimizing the need for adult supervision and safety monitoring. Plus, you put them up in the air with no way to get down on their own. How perfect is that -- like a very inexpensive babysitter.

You'll notice that all of the ingredients are singular, one kid, one lucky gold line, etc. And there are pictures of two kids doing this. What to do with the other? That's right, dangerous pirate exercises. Tie a line (used to be the lucky gold one but I had to use an iffy blue one) to the boom and have the extra kid swing from coaming to coaming learning how to properly board a boat. With luck, nobody will swing off the boat and crash land on our neighbors but at least I'm not letting them keep the pirate dagger in their teeth as they swing.

1 comment:

Zen said...

Hmmm, You are really trying for that T-man Top Ten List, ar-n'cha...