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not exactly suburbia

I grew up on the bay. I was named after a boat, a mahogany Chris Craft speed boat. It sank. That boat was  named after a moth boat that my dad won championships with. That was hit by a truck.  Those are my namesakes. One of my cousins pulled the steering wheel out of the sunken boat and gave it to my dad as a gift.

When I was about ten, my cousin and I found some old wooden boats that no one wanted. (With good reason)  We dragged them down to the  marina and spent large amounts of our summer vacation caulking leaks. A shame we didn’t know how to fiberglass, but we were ten.

There was a boatyard down the street that had a number of boats up on blocks. Some had been there for years. We climbed in a small cabin cruiser and my cousin, in his manly style, ripped out the sink. We drilled a hole in the side of my boat and installed it. However, the running water (which we had to supply) only went one way. Out.

We conceived the idea of a canopy. My cousin  blithely dismembered all his mother’s mops and brooms for the handles, which we nailed to the side of the boat.

There were a lot of old restaurant booths stored in my dads warehouse. We cut large swaths of the vinyl upholstery to use for a canopy. We had enough to have pull down flaps for extra shade.

We didn’t understand why our parents convulsed with laughter, calling it the African Queen. In case you aren’t an old movie buff, that was a Humphrey Bogart and Katherine Hepburn film.

african queen 1

african queen 2This is what it looked like. About ten feet shorter, no flags and no engine blowing smoke.

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