Sunday, 19 January 2014

How not to make mistakes

Volume 4 – boats

I completely loathe boats which is fine except that it’s taken me around thirty years to consciously realize this. My husband clocked it a long time ago which explains why he sniggered like Muttley heading for a hernia each time at the booking office. I’m ever the optimist, though, and the romantic scenario that plays out in my brain – the very gentle swell (or better still, the glare of the sun off the flat as a bowl of soup sea), the fresh smell of the open ocean, the sweet breeze caressing the hair, the charmingly attentive Captain … apologies - forgot myself for a sec … compares as favourably only as do Enid Blyton and The Exorcist. 

I have lain prone for hours under my parasol, on a hopefully unsaggy bottomed sunbed gazing at a not too small boat puttering out to sea, while time and again waving lazily back in a sun drenched stupor to its excited human cargo.

Looks good eh?” enquires Muttley slyly, flat out in the full onslaught of the relentless sun, desperate to outdo my- tan- to- be, “nice gentle pootle round the coves, pleasantly relaxing,” and before I know it, we are paid up, booked and aboard The Crazy Lady. (I know, I know I’m an idiot.) 

Sure enough, she pootles gently out toward the harbour gates whereupon the Captain immediately gives full rip to the throttle and the damn boat’s back end instantly drops a good five feet as its front end ups and rises to match and we are off like the bloody Grand National a-smacking the waves full frontal. Eyes wild, hair whipping eyes and gasping mouth, my arse is vaulting four feet off the seat and I haven’t got enough hands to grasp the silver rail, hold down the beach bag and force my boobs back inside their ludicrously inadequate bikini top.

What seems like a lifetime later, alighting the boat, shaking and panting not so slightly, I catch Muttley’s guilty eye.