You don’t mess around with smoke on a boat. Which is where Your Survival Guy found himself last Saturday preparing to bring our boat, Tom Sawyer, back to Newport after a two-week stay on a mooring I keep in Mattapoisett. (You can read here about how my yard went up in smoke).
Turning the engines over, they just wouldn’t catch. I checked the safety kill switch. It was connected. Made sure I wasn’t in gear (Read here about that one from last summer.) Check. Tried the engines again. No go. But this time, I saw smoke rising through the console from down below, along with the smell of burning wires. Never a good sign, especially on a boat with 200 gallons of fuel in the tanks.
I shut everything down. Sat there. And did the smart thing. I took apart the console, disassembled the radar, sonar, three battery connections, satellite radio, like mission control on Apollo 13, working the problem people. Kidding. I didn’t do that. I’m Your Survival Guy, not an electrical engineer. I hailed the launch, and—defeated—talked it over with my dad, driving in my car, back to Newport. Just another day on the water. As one client reminds me, the thing with boats is, everything’s broken, we just don’t know what it is yet.
First thing Monday morning, my dad drove down to the boatyard, talked with his guys about the situation to see if they could come out and look. Because that’s what my dad does, without a moment of hesitation, helping me solve another one of life’s problems. As I’m learning, with a college-aged daughter and high school senior son—you never stop being a parent, no matter how old your children are.
Yesterday, the owner of the boatyard called me and said they looked at it for an hour, something is obviously wrong near the “harness” (a term Your Survival Guy associates with horses), but they don’t have time to look at it until after they haul a harbor full of boats, winterize them, and tuck them away for the winter.
In speaking with Skip, the owner of the boatyard I work with in Newport, and who helped me in buying Tom Sawyer (read about how to buy a boat here.), he suggested we haul, trailer back home, winterize, and do the work over the winter. “Give me his number,” Skip said. “And I’ll coordinate it.”
Action Line: Note to self: It helps to have people you can count on. Period.
P.S. Here’s one memory that makes boating worthwhile.
For a few precious hours Sunday, hundreds of boats gathered under the Newport, RI bridge to begin a massive Pro-Trump boat parade to celebrate our love for country and concern for where it’s going.
As we powered up the bay, sounding our horns, waving flags, and simply enjoying the flotilla, we were fired up in anticipation of seeing the crowds at Colt State Park.
Thousands lined the shore waving flags and cheering as the parade went by. You felt the love for your fellow Americans. It was a special day for my family and for all of those who turned out in Rhode Island: a day to be proud to be an American and of turning Rhode Island Red.
Laura Damon writes in the Providence Journal:
BRISTOL — Terry and Joe Lorenz of Portsmouth stood close to the water’s edge at Colt State Park on Sunday afternoon. Terry proudly held an enormous Trump flag, and the couple beamed as they watched the parade of boats, many sporting flags like the one Terry held.
“I feel emotional. I’m proud to be here,” Terry said. “I am a Republican and I’m proud to be a Republican.”
“I like [Trump’s] spirit, I like his patriotism,” Joe said.
Terry and Joe were two of the roughly 2,000 people, an estimate from Park Ranger Grayson Caron, who arrived at the state park waterfront Sunday to soak in the pro-Trump boat parade, organized by Laura Larrivee of Barrington.
“It was a greater turnout than Independence Day,” a historically crowded day at the park, Caron said. He noted officials there called off max capacity at the park and cars were allowed to park in typically prohibited areas because of the sheer volume of people funneling in.
A petty officer with Coast Guard Station Castle Hill estimated that around 300 boats participated in the parade.
Boaters who took part in the parade gathered at the Newport Pell Bridge at 11 a.m. and made their way to Bristol, where they rode by Colt State Park, an optimal vantage point for those who wanted to catch a glimpse. The boats arrived at the park around noon, and the parade ended in Warwick, a seaman with Coast Guard Station Castle Hill confirmed.
“I was sitting on watch all day … I believe it went well,” Seaman Nathan Schroeder at Coast Guard Station Castle Hill said of the parade. He said he was not aware of any boating accidents.
“It was chaotic for a little while [but] it was smooth,” Caron said. Over his radio, he heard of one potential assault that happened in the park around 12:15 p.m. He did not know the details.
“Peaceful is the key word today,” Larrivee said at the Lighthouse Marina, LLC, in Barrington just before 9 a.m. on Sunday.
She was there with Jean Lehane and Karen Ferris, both of Portsmouth. As the event organizer, Larrivee wanted to get to the Pell Bridge early. She wore a baseball cap that said “Yes, I’m a Trump girl. Get over it,” and a T-shirt that read “The Great Awakening,” matching Lehane’s shirt.
Ferris wore a “Trump, keep America great,” hat.
“This rally … is not about fighting the other side, [but about supporting the president] and the things we believe,” Larrivee said.
Asked why she supports the president, and what she likes about him, Lehane said “reducing regulations … [and] he does a lot for our veterans … incredible trade deals … beefing up our military …strengthening our border.”
“Try to put his personality to the side,” Lehane said. “The media portrays him a certain way.”Larrivee noted bipartisan support for criminal justice reform under Trump. Ferris said she appreciates Trump’s support for police officers.
“I think our police officers really need to know that they have supporters that back them,” Ferris said.
At Colt State Park, wearing a neon yellow “Trump” shirt, Ken Prew of Riverside said he was “very surprised” with the strong turnout of Trump supporters.
Prew noted he was a Democrat until 2016. Asked why he supports Trump, he said “look at the economy … he thinks of America first.”
Some people on shore could be heard yelling “four more years,” as boats and JetSkis cruised by the park. Many held flags, cheered and waved.
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E.J. Smith - Your Survival Guy
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