17 February 2008

Birds of a Feather

I keep my boat in the slums of the Berkeley Marina. We still have the old dilapidated wooden docks, no dockboxes or proper electrical outlets. We have some benefits though....we're about a minute away from the wind and, umm, that's it. Our slips are really wide but somehow they find it in their hearts to charge us extra for that.

The general disrepair of this section of the marina tends to carry over to the boats. I've written before about the derelicts, powerboats that lose cabin roofs, abandoned boats, and boats that demand to borrow docklines every time a storm comes in. There are about 20 boats on our pier that I've never seen sailed or even visited.

Chris is different. His Dana 24 is the shining jewel in the crown that is our little neighborhood. She's a beautiful boat and lovingly maintained. But I knew that, eventually, Chris would have to return to the mean. There is just no way to keep up that level of maintenance without some sort of a community around him. And today was the day.

Chris' boat looked like the rest of us. Crud was dripping off of everything, there were bits of dirt and grime on deck, the lifelines were dangling this way and that and she just looked a mess. Welcome to A dock I yelled triumphantly!

Of course, that's just some sort of organic enviro-friendly varnish stripper that did its job by the time we got back to the dock and his boat again looks beautiful. But for one brief shining hour we weren't being upstaged, we had us a neighbor.

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