madshutterbug (madshutterbug) wrote,

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Ya Gotta Accentuate...

I've been thinking about a meme being started by trinker here. I've been thinking about it because, even though it's part of life and it's not really in my control, there's been some bummer things in the past several months or so. On the other hand, there's also been some really good things too.

So, to quote:

Whether it's "in addition to" or "instead of" the sort of entry you'd post in your lj, try posting one happy memory (without also putting in the doom and gloom "balance") and come up with one productive thing you have done in the past 24 hours. It doesn't have to be something huge -- if getting up and washing your face and brushing your teeth constitutes a big accomplishment, because you've been in a depressive funk for days, then that counts!

My brother John and his wife Kay left New York in September 2001, starting their cruising life about the Sailing Vessel North Star. The general route was South, and they made it to St. Augustine, Florida by the start of December. I drove over to vist them, and to pick up some things John wanted to "store" ashore. We enjoyed a good lunch, and I saw their new home for the first time. Since our visit spanned the lunchoen hour, it also spanned slack tide. This would probably not be a major problem except that it conicided with a change in the wind too.

So we spent some time watching out for, and fending off other boats as all the boats in the anchorage just north of the Bridge of Lions started "sailing around their anchors." After about 15 minutes of this, John decided enough was enough and it was time to up-anchor and move the boat south of the Bridge (for those who don't know, the Bridge of Lions is a drawbridge). I helped Kay hosing down the anchor line as it came up, then John called me aft.

"It's going to be quicker for me to go help Kay stow the anchor than explain it to you, so here's the fathometer, here's the throttle, take the helm and keep us in mid-channel for a bit." I sat on the wheelbox, same as John had been while steering. On our current course we were aimed directly at the east coast of the fairly broad channel.

"What's your draft?" I asked, glancing at the fathometer. It showed nine feet, shallowing out.

"Seven feet with our current load," John replied. I put the helm over to port (left), and nothing much happened. "You may need to goose the throttle to get steerage. That's why I mentioned the location," John said with a big grin, heading forward to stow the anchor and leaving me with the task of not putting their "house" aground.

A little bit of throttle did indeed give us some steerage, and North Star came about to port, circling back into the main channel. John had simply been the first of many to make the same decision, and pretty soon we were leading a "parade" of about 10 sailing boats of various sizes in big, lazy circles and figure-eights waiting for the bridge to rise. I am happy to say that I didn't run North Star aground, nor into any other boats, and that John took the helm back for the transit of the bridge.

And in the past 24 hours, I've reassured Mamma Munch that she is loved even though Mrs. Boss is still in Deltona taking care of family business, updated several details on how my nursing colleagues in the OR use our computer system to make their life easier, made sure the Maternity Goats had sufficient food and water, and by making this entry, put one more checkmark in the Why It's OK to Miss My Brother column without embarking on an emotional roller-coaster ride.

You've gotta accentuate the positive
Eliminate the negative
Latch on to the affirmative
Don't mess with Mister In-Between


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