Bobbo was steering the aluminum motor boat towards us. In the boat he had three of the Navy Seals; Justin, Chuck, and Eddie. They were gripping the hull of the boat and squinting as they watched us intently. The wind blew their hair back and exposed their serious expressions.
The girls were waving and cheering enthusiastically. “We’re saved! We’re saved!” My son continued to blow on the whistle in short bursts.
The motor boat slowed as it approached us and then swung to the left. The kids quieted down.
“Good afternoon citizens!” Bobbo greeted us. “Have any injuries been sustained?”
“No. We are all fine, thank you,” I responded.
“What seems to be the problem?” Bobbo asked.
“The tiller broke,” my son squealed as he held up the splintered broom handle as evidence. Bobbo and the Seals all looked at the tiller grimly. Eddie let out a low whistle and shook his head.
“Recruits! What we have here is equipment failure.” Bobbo summed up the situation with authority in his voice.
“Hooyah!” The three Navy Seals responded. I stole a look at my husband. His had the tiniest bit of a smile on his face as he silently watched the scene unfold.
“Gentlemen: You have been specially chosen for this rescue mission. Remember that it pays to be a winner. Does anybody want to quit?”
“Sir, no, sir.”
“You will dive into the waters and help our civilians into the motor boat. Then you will right the sail boat, take down the sails and paddle the boat into headquarters.”
“Sir, yes, sir.”
“You have your orders, gentlemen. How do you plan to accomplish this task?”
“All in, all the time,” the Navy Seals responded.
“Roger that, men. Now, move out!”
|Navy Seals to the rescue|
Justin and Chuck dove into the waters one at a time in an orderly fashion. Justin swam over to us and assumed the position of holding the sail boat off the rocks. Chuck motioned for us to swim over to him as he tread water by the motor boat. Eddie held out his arms to help each of us get into the aluminum boat. It was a struggle but Chuck, poor guy, assisted by pushing us each from behind. It was not pretty. It was not graceful. But we all got on board and the motor boat did not capsize.
When we all were finally in the boat, which was now riding very low in the water, Eddie picked up a paddle that was laying on the bottom of the motor boat and tossed it into the water and then he dove in. We watched as Chuck and Justin grabbed the dagger board. Eddie located a line and began to pull the rope taut. It took less than ten seconds for the team to have the boat erected.
Bobbo, idling the motor, sat wordlessly and watched as the Seals set about their mission. The Seals would communicate with quick sentences and commands. No time was wasted. Every movement was efficient. They worked like a well-oiled machine.
Justin and Chuck hurled themselves onto the sail boat and rapidly set about taking down the sails in a most practiced manner. Eddie swam to get the two paddles which were now bumping up against the rocks of the island. He swam them back to the sail boat, threw the paddles into the hull and then launched himself into the boat. He immediately picked up one of the paddles and furiously began to paddle away from the perilously close rocky shoreline. Once the sails were down, Chuck sat at the bow and began to bail water. Justin picked up the second paddle and sitting across from Eddie, he thrust his oar into the water and with their powerful coordinated strokes the sail boat jerked forward and away from the rocks.
The kids and I broke into cheers as the bow of the sail boat turned towards camp. Himself pumped his fist in the air and smiled widely.
“Hooyah,” the Navy Seals responded with enthusiasm. Bobbo gave them a slow salute which they returned and only then did the three Seals look at each other and smile. “Hooyah,” they shouted again.
Bobbo revved the motor boat engine, cut a wide circle, and turned us back towards camp. I shivered as the wind picked up. I looked back at the kids. They were covered in goose bumps and shivering in their wet clothes and life jackets. You would think they would be miserable, but no, they had huge grins on their faces.
Bobbo slowly pulled up to the sail dock and Himself grabbed the edge and gently pulled us in. Bobbo killed the engine. Himself stepped out and began to secure the boat to the dock with the rope. He then assisted each of us out of the boat. The kids stood shivering.
“Thanks Bobbo. I’m so sorry about that!” I apologized.
“Don’t be sorry. It wasn’t your fault. Like I said before, it was equipment failure which is pretty common at camp, as you can imagine. We have the local marina on speed dial.”
“Forget the marina. It looks like all you will need is another broomstick actually, Bobbo,” Himself responded as he pointed to the tiller that our son held up. Bobbo laughed.
“Typical camp. But, surprisingly enough, that broomstick has lasted for over six summers now.”
“That’s impressive!” Himself laughed. “Your demonstration of focus and teamwork out there was also impressive.”
“Awww, those three guys have been coming to camp for years. I wouldn’t expect anything less. They have practiced righting a capsized boat in sailing class to the point that it has become second nature to them.”
“Thanks for your help.” Himself said as he extended his hand and shook Bobbo’s.
“You are so welcome. Thank you for providing them the opportunity to perform a rescue exercise.” Bobbo laughed. “That was kinda fun, actually. Maybe we will have to stage another one for next week! Gotta get back to Navy Seals club you guys. Go dry off and warm up now.”
We all thanked Bobbo again as Himself unwound the rope and threw it into the motor boat. Bobbo turned on the engine and slowly drove back towards the beach. I looked out and saw that the Navy Seals, paddles glistening in the sun as they worked in unison, were already more then half way back to the dock.
“So we didn’t ruin camp?” My son quietly asked as he pulled on my life jacket.
“Nope. This is camp, little buddy. We just created an adventure!”
“Ooooh…” he responded.