The sea has not changed

Today a sailboat hit the rocks of the Newport Jetty and sank. If there was anyone on board they’re dead; no survivors found.

This comes a week after a couple were swept to their deaths off the same jetty.

Pleasure boating and jetty fishing aren’t North Sea fishing, but they’re deadly serious business.

Winds to 45 mph and a storm-surge sea? I’ll stay on land. All the way on land, in fact.

When I was a child, we were anchored in our little boat off Catalina Island in a cove, and we lost the dinghy off the back of the boat at night. We couldn’t be without that dinghy, so my father swam out into the black water with a flashlight in his teeth to get it. It was a long, long time before he came back. I think that was our family’s most frightening moment.

6 thoughts on “The sea has not changed

  1. swam out into the black water with a flashlight in his teeth
    Your father was a tough old bastard, wasn’t he. I still remember the [jg] kicking the anchor chain story. Damn…


  2. There’s so much to be learned about your dad from those four sentences. I know he was a man of conviction but holy sweet baby jesoos, that’s some bad ass shit.


  3. My nephews are expected to start life guarding this summer in Newport Beach, Laguna Beach, and Huntington Beach. Their fathers (my brothers), were formerly life guards. People think it’s this great job: sun, beach, getting to be the hero. Then your brother comes home shaken to the bone because two young girls did not walk to the bathroom, where he directed them, but instead decided to pee in the water during red flag and were swept to their deaths. (At least not in front of his guard area.) Another tells of a life he managed to save, the punctuation to the drama being the drowning victim vomiting into his mouth after receiving successful rescue breathing. Now my nephews are going to have to make the tough choices that could cause them to lose their own lives as they try to save someone else’s.
    The ocean is wonderful. But when you have lived here all your life, you come to realize just how carefully you have to respect it.


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