I went to a birthday party a few months ago. Many good friends were there; most were old friends, and most were boaters. As I sipped a draft, the ambience of the party brought a question to mind: Where do marinas come from? And the questions ran on in my head. What goes into making a marina special? Do they just sit on shore, taken for granted by those of us who stop there?
I love anchoring. Most of us do. Whether it’s hanging out on a Sunday afternoon or anchoring overnight, this is a special part of boating. So I’m not going to tell you about how wonderful it is because you know that. And I’m not going to give a lesson on how to anchor because most of us know about this, too. I’m going to tell you about some of the anchoring problems we’ve encountered and how to avoid them and make it all fun.
Just about every time you pick up a boating magazine you read about “how to do” any number of repairs. These articles are great at instilling self-confidence. But I’m going to talk about the other side of the coin: how not to do it. And trust me, I’ve had plenty of experience. I certainly can’t cover all of my mistakes, but I’ll give you a running start in the diesel department.
Over the centuries mariners have often sailed in fleets. There have been good reasons for this, such as war and pirates. In recent years, many boaters going on trips or cruises have preferred to go in groups rather than solo, even if they’re just going to a marina down the river. There are good reasons for this, and some that aren’t so good.
A sinister trap for seamen and their vessels awaits in one of the world’s busiest and most important shipping areas. It has destroyed more ships of all kinds than we will ever know. It has killed untold numbers of people. We’re not even sure of its origin, only that it’s there, waiting for the unwary or the unlucky.
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