Amsterdam View: Where’s my boat?
Posted on September 13, 2010
Sometimes nature plays ugly tricks on you. One day you have a boat, the next day… you don’t.
A week or so ago a boat moored right opposite my writer’s residence after what must have been a jolly day on the Amsterdam canals. The boat – more like a giant raft – resembled an open air fraternity house, with comfortable sofa’s, rowdy boys, downy cushions, silly girls, a hefty stereo and beer on tap to boot. They were a happy bunch those boys, but they were clearly in need of some solid ground after a day’s sailing and drinking. So they threw out the fenders, cabled the boat to the railing, neatly covered up the sofa’s, courteously helped the squealing girls out and left.
I haven’t seen them since.
Today they returned and it must have been a very confusing experience for them. They were sure that they had left their boat here, but you never know with these canals; it’s all water and parked cars and old façades and it all looks the same and, hey, they were kinda plied when they moored and left.
They sauntered up and down a bit, only to draw the conclusion that those two blue bulbs floating near the quay-wall were actually their fenders. Erroneously they figured that another boat must have hit theirs and sank it. But I know who the mischievous trickster was that scuttled their ship: good old Dutch friend The Rain… Last week it came down in buckets and if you don’t bale out this is what it does.
Anyway, they quickly gathered that raising the wreck was impossible, so they sent Green Shorts – he must be the fresher – into the water to rescue whatever there was left to be rescued. He pricked and probed, found the boat and saved some essentials. His two mates studied his endeavors with quiet attention, occasionally lending a hand, and taking pictures for posterity and the rest of the frat house.