hgazette.com, Haverhill, MA

News

October 10, 2013

Boating experiences take me adrift

It all started with an aluminum 12-foot dingy attached to one side of a wooden dock. Parallel to it was a 35-foot cruiser with a beefed-up engine that appeared newer than the vessel to which it was attached.

The boats came with the cottage by the lake I purchased in that fall of 1970, somewhere secluded in Southern New Hampshire.

Prior to this, my boating experiences included a rubber tube I had used in the ocean and a wooden sailboat I had navigated as a 6-year-old in someone’s backyard pool. Nautical adventures and I were as distant as the tide.

I enjoyed my little boat. It came to me already named by its previous owner. He called her “Afta You,” and it’s always been ladies first in my lakeside manner. You didn’t go very fast with a 7-horse power motor, but it was good enough for puttering and fishing about. Rowing at the crack of dawn became a daily exercise ritual with me.

As for its bigger mate, I wound up selling it to a custodian at work. He was looking for a bigger boat to navigate the Merrimack River. I gave him a good price, trailer and all. He spent all winter sprucing it up, before launching it in the spring.

I was there the day he set it upon the river — before it sank, right in the middle of the Merrimack. The harbormaster came to the rescue and it cost my janitor friend more than what he paid for the boat to have it retrieved. Termites had done a number on the vessel’s wooden build.

Next came the sailboat, a modest craft I ran across in someone’s yard one day. The owner was glad to part with it and I picked it up for a token. The sailor in me graduated to a “Sunfish,” which is going on 20 years.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
News
  • 140808_HG_HAND_CUTTING

    Attending a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the Marjorie Goudreault walkway are, from left, Elizabeth Delgado, special assistant to Lawrence Mayor Dan Rivera; John Dimitry, former NECC president, and his wife, Audrey; Steven Buturlia of Pelham; Kelsy Buturlia of Pelham; Barbara Goudreault of Haverhill; Christopher Goudreault of Haverhill; Mary Goudreault of Tewksbury; Bill Moynihan of Haverhill, chair of NECC's Board of Trustees; Julie Reynolds of Middleton, N.H.; Patrick Goudreault of Haverhill; Matthew Goudreault of Haverhill; Lynn Morton of Tucson, AZ; Ann Corey of Atkinson; and NECC President Lane Glenn.

    'She was passionate about what she believed' Posted 6 days ago 2 Photos
  • The city wants you Posted 6 days ago
  • 140811_HG_CRU_HOSPITALS

    Joseph Roach is the new CEO and President for Holy Family Hospital in Methuen and Holy Family Hospital at Merrimack Valley in Haverhill. He is standing in front of the hospital located in Haverhill. CARL RUSSO/Staff photo

    No, you're not in Methuen Posted 6 days ago 1 Photo
  • The Lamp Post Posted 6 days ago
  • 140725_HG_ASW_BEST MANICURE 2

    AMY SWEENEY/Staff photoRoyal Nails and Spa offers the best manicure, according to a vote by readers of the Gazette.

    More than just a mani-pedi Posted 6 days ago 2 Photos
  • 140717_HG_MSC_BURGER_3

    MARY SCHWALM/Staff photo The Lasting Room burger with hand-cut fries is a favorite of customers.

    Lasting Room burgers make for lasting impressions Posted 6 days ago 3 Photos
  • SCHOOL SUPPLIES3 [Duplicate]

    AP Photo/Yoobi Yoobi Pretzel Erasers make going back to school fun.

    Sharpening up for class Posted 6 days ago 8 Photos
  • FILE_HAVBEST_4

    Staff file photo Buffalo boneless ribeye steak is offered at Haverhill Beef Company on Merrimack Street. Here, owner Peter Carbone holds a tray of freshly cut pieces.

    Get far more than beef at Haverhill Beef Posted 6 days ago 3 Photos
  • HAVBEST_PBI_HEAVNLY

    PAUL BILODEAU/Staff photo Elaine Saragas serves coffee at Heav'nly Donuts.

    Best coffee brewing at Heav'nly Donuts Posted 6 days ago 1 Photo
  • HAVBEST_PBI_PENTUCKET

    PAUL BILODEAU/Staff photo Pentucket Bank President Scott Cote, left, and financial adviser Kevin McKinnon talk in the main lobby of the bank's Merrimack Street branch.

    Pentucket Bank is tops Posted 6 days ago 1 Photo

Photos of the Week
Stocks