Tuesday, August 27, 2013

"Wrath of the wasps" or "Why you should always have spare glasses aboard"

For over four years I've kept an extra set of eyeglasses in a drawer on the boat. I'm not completely blind without them, but I shouldn't be driving without them.

Every time I'd see the spares in the drawer my mind would quickly play through some drastic scenario where I was braving 6' seas with 50 knot winds as I struggled to survive and got hit in the head with the boom, knocking my glasses overboard or breaking them beyond use.

I never thought I'd lose my glasses while standing on the dock because of a measly insect.

Sunday morning Mary wanted to scrub the boat down, so I opened to dock box to grab the scrub brush and some other cleaning supplies. I was greeted with a face full of wasps.

I jumped backwards in pain and only faintly heard the splash that I realized were my brand new glasses disappearing into the murky waters of Marina Del Sol.

It took ten minutes for the angry wasps to settle down enough that I could walk past the dock box to
get back on the boat. All I could think about was the fact that over $360 had just disappeared from my pocket.

I changed into my swimsuit and sullenly walked back to where it seemed like the glasses had disappeared. Several carp that were eating the moss off the side of the dock fled as I eased myself into the water. The left side of my face was throbbing.

I took a big breath and made my first dive.

The visibility in our marina water is less than six inches and the bottom is dark, soft mud. I quickly realized that without a mask I was never going to see the glasses. I resorted to the lifeguard's lost bathers search -- diving  down and doing arm sweeps across the bottom. After a half dozen dives I'd found nothing, but a zinc anode and stirred up enough mud that visibility was now zero.

I returned to the boat, now angry, and grabbed a flip flop to go crush all the wasps. Mary intervened and talked me down, reminding me that people wind up in the hospital and even die from bee and wasp attacks.

I calmed down and decided to dive a few more times. I still found nothing behind the neighbor's boat, and I sure wasn't going to swim underneath boats in the marina or the docks without a mask or air.

The glasses were gone.

I rinsed off with the hose, changed clothes, pulled out the spare glasses, and drove home in defeat.

Two days later, and my lip STILL hasn't stopped swelling.

I never thought I'd be defeated by a bug, but I guess you win some and you lose some.