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Tuesday, June 20, 2017

(7) DON'T TELL ME WE'RE GOING TO HAVE CHILDREN ON BOARD!

Two reviewers of my 1991 memoir (Take My Ex-Husband, Please--But Not Too Far) were critical of the fact that Kathie's younger sister Vonnie disappears from the book with no explanation until the final page's "In Loving Memory."   This series of posts explains what happened to our daughter. 
August 20, 1955, Cohasset to Sharks
     Temperature ashore expected to be in the high nineties.  I started calling prospective cruising companions at 9:00 this morning, wound up with the Whitcombs and Brewers.  Meanwhile Timmy cajoled me into cajoling his father into letting him and his sister join us.  I made Timmy promise not to nag, not to keep asking questions, not to bother his father.
     “Is it all right if I think I see a whale to say, `Daddy, is that a whale’?”
     Whitey’s Whiteyish comment: “Don’t tell me we’re going to have children on board!”  
     Unsquelched, Vonnie announced that she was going up to the crow’s nest—“to lay some eggs.”   
HOW DID VONNIE ACHIEVE THIS FEAT AT THE COHASSET
YACHT  CLUB?  A GIANT SIDEWAYS LEAP?
OR DID SHE FALL FROM THE SKY?
     I began telling Jill Whitcomb and Sally about the day Timmy and Dennis Reardon took it into their heads to go rowing on the windiest, stormiest day of the season, and had just reached the point  where Dennis fell overboard when Jill said: “Should Vonnie be doing that?  I really don’t think she should be doing that, should she?”
     All we could see of Vonnie was her hands clinging to the railing at the bow.  The rest of her was dangling out of sight over the water.  We all shouted at her to get back on the boat, her father making the gruesome observation that if she lost her grip, she would fall under the boat and be chopped up by the propeller.  It took Vonnie a couple of minutes to pull herself up because her bathing suit got caught on something.  Timmy, shaken by his father’s remark, came and sat quietly beside me for five minutes.
     We tried for sharks with the harpoon, but had no luck.  Dead fish donated by a passing dragger gave us bait for the rod and reel.  This time we met with success and gave Bob Whitcomb lots of moral support as he waged his battle with this thug of the fish world.
     The children were thrilled, but Whitey kept saying, “When does the excitement begin?”  He is being very typical today.  He fondly referred to the shark as a “Timmy-eating shark.”  When the shark was close enough to the boat, Ed and Bob were able to tie a line around its tail -- just in time, too, because it managed at the last minute to shake the hook loose.  Then we proceeded to drown it by dragging it behind the boat.
     My mother was distressed by our shark movies.  Rereading the Log in October of 2000, I am distressed, too.  Grandson Teddy, environmentally-concerned vegetarian, will join our ranks if he ever reads this entry.  Sorry Teddy. [Isha. 10-21-00]
    

3 comments:

  1. Your blog is such a delight! I hope you never run out of stories to tell.

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  2. Here it is, Pat, more than a year later with Candid Current Events for updates. I also find it worthwhile to republish series of posts that haven't been seen in several months. New visitors leave their calling cards on my statistics.

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