Saturday, September 21, 2013

Dereliction and Anger

Harbor in winter of 2012 before the homesteading crisis.

The three (maybe four now) homesteading boats remain in the harbor. Now I join them with my own dereliction; I have not written a post in almost a month. I could blame it on the absence of hurricanes since this is the season when I would normally pick up at least one named storm locally. I am NOT complaining, nor am I assuming the worst is past. Too much karma at stake.

As for the boats, a couple of developments. First, one boat owner has agreed to move his boat to the inside of the bridge in Greens Creek, where it was before he injured his shoulder and wanted a shorter distance to shore as he rows his dinghy. Notably, he credits his decision to someone simply asking him nicely to remove his boat from the transient anchorage in the harbor. In case, you read that too quickly, there is a lesson there. Call it manners, call it communication, call it respect. Rather than anger, why not a conversation? No, that will not always work, but it is usually a damn good place to start.

Second, as it relates to S/V Primadonna, people have offered assistance, the engine starter has been repaired ($200 problem), and the crew is hoping to leave for France as soon as they can collect sufficient provisions -- they are thinking a week or so. This is not adequate for the ones who are angry. What some see as charity and helping people less fortunate than ourselves, the Angry call "enabling." Their view is ever more strongly "throw the bums out." I am not sure how this fits with a Christian ethos because I cannot recall any Sunday school lessons in which Jesus said, "Help the needy for a little while, but then kick them out." But The Bible is a big and long book, so maybe I missed that passage. In any case, I fail to see how doing nothing to help will resolve the situation as it has not yet.

Splashed into the harbor angst and anger, WalMart announced that it would be building a WalMart Express just outside the town limits. Good for them as they will pay only county taxes, but receive police coverage from the town. Not so good for us locally. With the predatory practices that WalMart uses, our local pharmacy, hardware store and especially our little "mom and pop" grocery store are at risk. Despite overwhelming citizen opposition (300+ signatures on a petition in a town of less than 900), our spineless commissioners declined to support the local businesses by expressing opposition to WalMart. 

For positive news, we have the arrival of fall. Cool air, cool breezes, nights eating in the cockpit. Shoals of bait and clouds of menhaden flashing copper. I keep expecting to see the slick iridescence of prey shredding the bait to oil and chum. Tud watched a large red drum consume a small wounded trout. Dave caught a large red drum fishing off Butch's M/V My Dream a couple nights ago. Both were too big to keep, but exciting to see. The C-Brats are back with their C-Dorys, and a couple of cruisers have passed through. It is still early for the southern migration, but it has begun. Bill on S/V Hale Kai departed Thursday.

C-Brats at WPM.

In closing, in addition to confessing my dereliction in posting, I must confess that all the anger circling around has made me angry. I do not like being angry, so this makes me mad. It makes me want to pick a verbal joust with some of the angriest people who are offering the least solutions. I have not and likely will not, but it takes a lot of tongue biting.

Our wonderful labrador, Scout, is getting older. We were not sure he would make it this long, particularly when we moved him onto the boat at age nine. But he has adapted, only falling off the boat a handful of times. Then he just puts his chin on the water and dog paddles to shore or to a work float where we can pick him up. At 12 1/2, he can still make a puppy face albeit one colored with gray.

Enjoy autumn.


  1. I've been wondering about the anchorage situation, thanks for the update. We're still in the yard in VA and will join the southern migration in another 10 days or so. See you in a couple of weeks!

  2. I see that I am happily anchored in the middle of your picture of the harbor from 2012. Thanks for posting that memory, and thanks also for providing a kinder, more tolerant slant on the state of the anchorage.

    1. Yes, as you had said to me, before there was homesteading, there were the same number of boats happily anchored in the harbor.

      I enjoyed your video of sailing on Narragansett.


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