Silver Laughter’s Mick Orton Makes A Boating Mistake

After realizing I had forgotten the key, I had to swim back to the dock in freezing water.

After realizing I had forgotten the key, I had to swim back to the dock in freezing water.

Keep in mind, we are new to boating; this is the first boat we have ever owned. Though I have been boating and water skiing with friends out here and on the Sacramento Delta, we have never owned our own boat.

Last week, I had invited Edwin, who is my “little brother” with the Big Brothers Program over to take a ride in the boat. As we lowered the Four Winns off the lift and guided it to the dock, the bow line came off because I had not secured it properly. Panic set in as the boat drifted off into the large lagoon. I must say, we were lucky the wind wasn’t blowing that day or it could have been real trouble.

I quickly changed into my swimsuit, dove into the FREEZING water and swam out to the boat only to find… I had forgotten to take the key!

I threw on a surf shirt, jumped on the floating pool chair and paddled out to rescue the boat.

I threw on a surf shirt, jumped on the floating pool chair and paddled out to rescue the boat.

Please note that experienced boaters have asked us, why didn’t you drop the anchor and pull yourself back in? Remember, I started off by saying we are new to boating?

The first picture shows me reluctantly swimming back to the dock in the COLD water as our dog, Bowie, and Edwin look on! Fortunately, we still had our old pool chairs from our last house. The second photo shows I was able to paddle back out again and retrieve the boat. Lesson learned! Definitely not a rock star moment!

Notice how much farther the boat had drifted out. The next two days, my shoulders were SORE. Dave Neumann, who I played with in The Contents Are:, reminded me by e-mail that I am not 20 years old anymore. Don’t I know it?

Mick Orton



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