Why Boat?

Why Boat?

Growing up near many lakes in western Michigan, I loved but took for granted availability of lakes for recreational boating. After moving to Indiana in the late 1970s, I sometimes felt landlocked, but came to enjoy many of Indiana’s rivers and lakes. Rhonda and I continued to be drawn to Michigan’s lakes. We dreamed of a cottage with a view of the water, and were blessed when that dream became a reality a few years ago. We love our “lake-glimpse” cottage that is a short walk from the marina where our boat lives.

One of my time-consuming but ultimately rewarding projects over the past stay-at-home weeks has been to review, scan, sort and otherwise deal with a lifetime of photos, some printed and some digital. We now have more than 10,000 photos that are relatively organized and accessible. Included were MANY photos of boats, Including the following selection:

1960’s 16 foot Larson Runabout “Wyvern”
1989 Carver Montego 21
2000 Four Wynns 24
2001 Sea Ray Sundancer 290
2003 Carver Voyager 460

So many wonderful memories, and a few frightening ones – including the time when I and my teenaged brothers disregarded storm warnings to pilot our 16 foot runabout back from Saugatuck to Holland, with large waves washing over the entire boat.

Sometimes it STILL takes us a while to learn about boats. One example of ongoing education is our recent three-dinghy adventure.

1. The Too-Big (we thought) Highlander 9.5’ Dinghy
2. The Too-Small (we learned) AB 8.5’ Dinghy
3. The Just-Right AB 10.5’ Dinghy!

In the children’s book “The Wind in the Willows“, by Kenneth Grahame, Mole and Rat are rowing up the river in Rat’s boat. They are discussing nautical things and life in general when Rat says,

Believe me, my young friend, there is nothing — absolutely nothing — half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats. Simply messing… about in boats — or with boats. In or out of ’em, it doesn’t matter. Nothing seems really to matter, that’s the charm of it. Whether you get away, or whether you don’t; whether you arrive at your destination or whether you reach somewhere else, or whether you never get anywhere at all, you’re always busy, and you never do anything in particular; and when you’ve done it there’s always something else to do, and you can do it if you like, but you’d much better not.

So why boat? It’s not an easy question to answer, but it’s a combination of freedom, challenge, competition, learning, adventure, fellowship with family and loved ones, and just plain fun.

(We will soon leave on a short trip to Florida to relocate our boat to a marina that is more protected from hurricanes.)

Happy boating!

5 thoughts on “Why Boat?

  1. Gotta love the old (and newer) boats. I learned to ski behind a 16′ with a 40 hp outboard; then got a ride behind
    an in-board jet boat, on a slalom ski in Marine Stadium, when on the far turn the line broke and I ended up on the beach. And back in 1961, my parents gave Mary Beth and me a trip on the Queen Mary from NY to France, for our
    honeymoon, plus 2 weeks of travel. And the last time we were together in a boat was in Naples; remember?

    1. Thanks for the memories, Ken! We sure remember our time in Naples with you and Jan, and even came across a picture of that beautiful PowerQuest boat a few days ago!

      All the best to you,

  2. Rick…….fantastic photo history of your boating years! All the best to you and your family as you continue your voyage!


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