11 October 2010

Adventures on the Spanish Main

The following account of our June camping trip in Point Reyes is set to be published by the Inverness Yatch Club [sic] in next month's newsletter, possibly after some editing for brevity's sake.

Since we live in a marina, our adventure began with a hurried trip to the airport, as do all good sea voyages. Upon arrival at the correct boat-launching port, Captain Sondy led the effort in making our boat sea-worthy via the applique of shiny new numbers. I, the First Officer, led the effort in talking like a pirate. Ensign Matthew received a field promotion to Second Officer, entitling him to carry the heavy stuff. Our fourth, Chief Petty Mutt Zero, toured the boat yard, alternating between claiming his domain and working on his tan. As he is somewhat of a ladies' man, he couldn't help but chase some female tail. Luckily, she remained loyal to her chauffeur and left with him before she could make any regrettable mistakes. But I digress.

Our fearless leader and soon to be muddy second officer managed to launch our very recently renumbered boat in six inches of what could be generously described as water. Since the Captain had no idea what the actual name of the boat might be, and CF3888CE is rather klunky, I named her Bob. Why, you ask? Because no one stopped me.

After the sails and approximately seven miles of rope were properly attached, it was finally time to set sail. Despite looking ridiculously cute in his life jacket, Zero quickly decided that he should have joined the Air Force instead and hid under a bench. To be perfectly honest, there were more than a few moments when I entertained thoughts of joining him.

Our intrepid Captain turned out to be correct in that the boat did not capsize after every tack. Just as I was getting over my fear of having to rescue Zero from inside a flipped boat, a new terror appeared from under the waves. The bottom of the boat kept rippling. "It's just the waves," Sondy claimed, but I already knew the truth: THE DREAD PIRATE ROBERTS! No, wait! It was Inverness's Introvert of the Sea! A giant octopus with a famous taste for human flesh!
giant octopus
Inverness's Introvert of the Sea.

Tentacles and boat hooks flailed everywhere! At one point Second Officer Matt found himself ensnared in octopus suckers, but Captain Sondy tickled the octopus until it released him. Unfortunately, she forgot about the four other tentacles with which she had been battling. Almost immediately I found myself being flung through the air! Egads! I expected to make a rather large splash with my grand entrance into the waves, but that failed to occur. In lieu of even the tiniest splash, the tentacle monster caught me by the ankle! Apparently I was to be the ball in a solo game of catch! Boo.

Just then Zero barked, "Anchors away!" as he heaved the anchor at the terror's head. Apparently Mr. Octopus wasn't in the mood for a new eyebrow ring as he immediately swam off in the direction of his plastic sturgeon.

Other than needing to rebraid twelve feet of rope and swab a distrubingly large puddle of octopus blood off of the bottom of Bob, we survived with nary a scratch! Once again Zero saved the day, this time with his 1337 braiding skills.

Miraculously, we soon arrived at the beach without any further death-defying incidents. Sondy dropped the slightly dented anchor while the rest of us set up camp. Zero found, and claimed, the perfect spot. We opted not to put our tent there.
the crew
The crew, shortly after setting up camp.

Our evening repast was interrupted by passing sailors, one of whom turned out to be the infamous Gentleman Caller. As they brought oysters for all to share, we let them join us around the grill/bonfire. I must admit, our Captain seemed to be falling for the Caller's wily ways, but as she never jeopardized the crew or Bob, I chalked it up to some harmless fraternization with the enemy.

After a rather lumpy nap, we woke bright and early to face our perilous voyage back to the mainland. At my suggestion, we spent hours arming ourselves with makeshift spears and heavy rocks. At the Captain's suggestion, we abandoned the rocks so as not to sink Bob. But after all that preparation, we had a disturbingly uneventful trip back. The wind was even blowing in the correct direction! Zero took this as a sign to remain above-deck and inspect the air.
sniff sniff
Zero sniffing for octopi.

Not only was the return trip painfully boring, but it was lightening quick. This meant plenty of time to go into town and observe stereotypical Italians failing to march in proper order. Oh the shame!

After a recent discussion, the Captain and First Officer decided that Hyperbole is a much better name than Bob. The Second Officer quickly agreed, and she was immediately rechristened from 400 miles away.

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