Yesterday morning, as my husband emptied the dishwasher, he suddenly said, “Remember boat bobbing?” A smile immediately came to my face as I swayed with the remembered motion of our boat bobbing up and down with the movement of the water. What brought this to mind was that we woke to a soft, gentle rain encouraging us both to consider curling up with a real page-turner.
“Remember the sun on our faces, a good book and a bottle of wine?”
How could I forget? Many of our friends liked to travel on their anniversaries—or at least do something exciting. But to us, there was no better way to spend it than our annual ritual of boat bobbing. When our anniversary rolled around, a family friend offered her cabin on Grand Lake. We went every year. When our children were born, we left the little ones–too young to take–with the Randy’s parents. Then we’d head to our get-away.
In the morning, I would pull Randy around the lake and he’d ski until he was exhausted. He never fell. Said falling in the cold mountain water was not permissible—even in the summer. Instead, I’d pull him near the dock and he’d glide in.
We’d spend afternoons boat bobbing out in the center of the lake. We’d lie on the bottom of the boat and read–sometimes separately and sometimes to each other. Occasionally, I would drift into sleep with the book collapsed on my chest. Yesterday morning I recalled the simultaneous feeling of both the cool mountain air and warm sun on my face.
Once in a while, another boater would come by to inquire about our seemingly empty boat. We’d take time to reassure him and thank him for his concern before returning to our books and bobbing. Intermittently, one of us would lift a head out of the book and prop up on one elbow to notice whether we were getting too close to the shore.
“I remember once there was a fishing line,” Randy said.
“I remember,” I said chuckling at this memory. One year we decided to hang a line over the boat and see if we could catch our dinner. Eventually, the line bobbed up and down as a poor little fish tried to rescue itself from our meal. We reeled her in to realize how small she was and how neither of us wanted to kill or clean her–or any other fish. We laughed at what poor fishermen we were, unhooked her and sent her back to her family.
Deciding we would make things look like we were fishing in order to avoid inquisitive boaters, we put the line back in the water with a weight and no hook. We never took the fishing pole again, though—just the good books and the bottle of wine.