One of the best places to go for free entertainment has got to be any boat ramp in the country.
The entertainment begins when two people, who were probably in love when the process started, attempt to back a trailer loaded with a floating object, into the water. Most folks at the boat ramp are in a major hurry for some unknown reason and when you can’t back the thing in the first place, speed is your enemy.
Why they are in a hurry I cannot say except perhaps the excitement of the launch causes the adrenaline to kick in and they forget the whys and wherefores of communication, which results in both of them ending up in the drink.
Of course, there’s also that mirror “problem” with things not appearing as they do in the mirror in the first place and the trailer going the opposite direction from where you think it ought to be going, so that when you’re all about turning right it wants to go left.
It’s at the boat ramp that relationships usually sink, but you don’t have to be married when you arrive to make a total wreck of just about any relationship, or your day on the water.
I was watching this couple a few months ago, the girl was quite attractive and sitting on one of two beautiful wave runners in a two piece as her nice looking fellow, (looked like a military guy), backed the trailer down the boat ramp. He had a look of confidence that said he had done this before, and although this looked like her first time, she was posing for anyone who would watch -- and that would be me.
As the trailer slid into the water, she quickly put the wave runner in reverse and was off into the bay without so much as a ripple. I must say, I was impressed at how fast the thing came off and it was a real beauty and so I continued to watch as she sat there testing the controls. He was busy preparing the other one for launch, a huge grin on his face, as he was no doubt thinking about the beautiful day to come. That’s about when things went off the deep end.
I noticed how her rear end seemed to be sinking ever so slightly as she circled about and he began screaming from the back of the trailer -- something or other about a plug. About the time he got the “ug” out, her engine stopped. Now this was salt water and a look of pure desperation covered his face while he watched her sink slowly into the brine. We, he and I, waded out and pulled her back to the trailer and that was when I saw just how good this guy was at diplomacy. In fact, he was so good we should probably send him to Congress. The very first word out of his mouth was “honey.” “Honey why? Honey, why in the world?” And “Honey what were you thinking?”
It all came out in about the first 10 seconds. And I knew that whatever came out of her mouth was going to be acceptable to him as she said “honey” first also. “Honey, I was only trying to help cause I knew you were in a hurry.” “Were” being the operative word here.
As we took the seat off the thing and saw the engine covered in saltwater, there was no longer a need for speed as we loaded it back on the trailer and they drove off for a leisurely day at some boatyard for repairs. I felt sorry for the both of them, but at least they managed to salvage their relationship.
This was a departure “show” but you can also catch the returning “show.” This is when folks come in from a hot day on the water, sand and salt inside every crevice the body has to offer and somebody saying, “Can we just get some fried chicken for Pete’s sake! I’m hungry!” If you’re ever looking for some cheap entertainment try the boat ramp, bring a chair and some food because the show never stops.
Sonny Harmon is an educator at Georgia Military College. Visit his blog at http://sharmon09.blogspot.com.