Two families enjoyed steady winds on the York River in situations that recalled sailing with Dad.

Sailing with DadMark and Barbara Adam brought their twin teenage girls on vacation from Bridgewater, NJ. Mark was itching to take the helm but very adroitly deferred to Megan and later Sarah. Each was reluctant but quickly grasped the concept. “Here we go,” Mark said as he unfurled the sails. “We’re getting the wind, hitting the waves, starting to tilt. This is great!”

They were surprised to find we were nearly the only sailboat on the river as far as the eye could see. Where they live, “Barnegat Bay in New Jersey gets crazy with boats every Friday, Saturday and Sunday. We see jet skis, fishing boats, sailboats and motorboats. It’s just crazy busy.”

Sailing with Dad“My brother was big into racing scows,” Mark recalled from their childhood. “He was a very aggressive competitor as a sailor, and everything else too. I’m a mechanical engineer, but he’s a mechanical engineer’s mechanical engineer. He worked on the Space Shuttle. He redesigned the brakes for it. Now he’s with Boeing in North Carolina.”

He continued, “Our dad used to take us on vacations to Nags Head and Florida and Maryland.” Barbara interjected, “Anywhere where there were fish.”

“He lives in the Florida Keys now and goes fishing on his Island Hopper 30. He had both his knees replaced at the same time last fall. I worry about him climbing up on the bridge. I tell him, ‘You can run the boat from below. Don’t go up there.’”

Sailing with DadBarbara asked Mark to tell the story of the time they went out with his dad and broke down. “She was naturally worried about going way out on the water. Dad assured her, ‘I never break down.’ Sure enough he had engine failure.” Barbara added, “What was supposed to be a two-hour trip took 12 hours.” Mark continued, “He knew all about towing and the costs, but he was too cheap to pay for it. He called the Coast Guard and reported a fuel leak overboard, and they came and towed him because of the environmental hazard. He’s 80.”

Off to Florida

Sailing with DadJanis and John Laycock of Port St. Joseph were in Williamsburg visiting their daughter Angela’s family. They got to talking about a little bay near Destin. Angela said, “You get there and you get out of your boat and walk around in the water. It’s only up to here (knees) and is crystal clear with a white sand bottom. It’s called Crab Island and is really something to experience.

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