Pulling Up My Anchors
During two weeks in Exumas, I found myself needing to dive overboard six times to save something. On each occasion I succeeded in rescuing something. On two occasions I would not have been without the assistance of someone else on Mystique.
- an anchor chain caught my boat's starboard keel at Tea Table Cay in a 30 knot gale
- a spare anchor recovery I left behind at Tea Table Cay to escape the 30 knots
- an outdoor grill propane canister fell an hour after dark and a shark sighting at Cambridge Cay
- a cap to a plastic gas tank rolled off into the swift current at Warderick Wells
- a twisted anchor bridle's shackle needed untangling at Highbourne Cay
- the same starboard keel stuck in a uncharted sandbar approaching O'Brien Cay
They were all seemed so different in weight, importance and effort. Some floated; some had me swim to the bottom of the keel; some took a moment; some took hours, but they all seemed to possess some unique similarities:
- none were dangerous or life-threatening
- none harmed the environment or the coral
- none delayed or inhibited my adventure
- All occurred when Mystique was anchored and stationary
- All were about rescue or recapturing something
- All tested my reflexes, powers of observation, and my strength in the moment
- All required me to jump in the drink and become totally submerged
- All proved successful; I recaptured each object
- All contributed to being another part of the adventure.
- All had to do with something I deemed important at the time.
- All generated laughter in the retelling.
I know how water can carry things away in a moment's notice or without. So I started to consider what about me makes me want to save things. Am I scared of losing something? Do I know the water so well enough I'm confident with her keeping or taking me places? So many questions. The one that keep me pondering was: What is it about me that retrieves what falls overboard from Mystique?
Ah, but I haven't always been successful; on my recent sail to Eleuthera, Clint and I tried to retrieve a broom handle, but after a short search it floated out of sight. However, maybe that doesn't count - that recovery attempt occurred while we were sailing. All the other occasions happened at anchor. Maybe I have to be well-grounded before I feel comfortable enough to jump into a sea to rescue something.