The Voice of Panorama – Summer 2014

A collection of interviews, poems and stories by Panorama Writers.

Father and His Crew

Episode Three: Mother’s Mutiny

The family’s 30 foot houseboat, the WESIX, is now located at a marina on Barnegat Bay on the Jersey Shore.

Eldest Son is now 15 years old, Eldest Daughter is 13, Little Sister is 10 and Little Brother is 5.

Mother’s initial doubts about the supposed fun of boating had their beginning at about this time. Although she didn’t want to deflate Father’s ego, Mother was also having some concerns about his boat handling abilities.

The children appeared to be enjoying the numerous adventures, however, so Mother decided to be a sport, and grin and bear it. As a precaution, she imbedded in her mind where the emergency flares were kept and made sure she knew how to use them.

It was during the family’s vacation on Chesapeake Bay that mother mutinied. Everyone but mother thought the large wakes from passing ocean-going freighters and barges were exciting. Father skillfully steered their houseboat through the man-made swells at a correct angle. He and the children commented on how small the sailors looked way high on the decks of their ships. Mother was wondering if the family looked like ants to the sailors.

She became concerned about safety when the houseboat’s engine stopped. The boat began wildly rocking from side to side at an ever increasing angle. there was no way to control it without power.

Father and Eldest Son had the hatch cover off trying to determine what was wrong with the engine.

Mother said, ” We’re out of gas”.

Father replied, “That’s impossible”.

Mother yelled, “We’re going to capsize! I’m going to shoot a flare!”

Father shouted, “Don’t you dare!”

Mother shot the flare.

A very small motorboat quickly came to their rescue and ignominiously towed them to a marina. It was determined that they had run out of gas. Father (AKA captain) was embarrassed.

Mother’s reward for not saying “I told you so,” was dinner in a restaurant on solid ground. (By the way, this was a very special treat because Mother had a tendency to feel sea sick while cooking in the boat’s gallery).

Pacified, and feeling self righteous, Mother set her doubts aside and prepared for their continuing cruise down the Inland Waterway.

…Thank you again for sharing memories with me.

Watch for Episode Four: Sand and Flies

*** Nancy Lee Methenitis


Just Wondering

It is so beautiful

I wonder why

More don’t take time

To notice the sky.

Today it is blue,

Yesterday it was gray;

Sometimes it is mixed

With clouds gone astray.

Whether inside or out

Try taking a pause;

Look up, all around you,

And enjoy – just because.

*** Nancy Lee Methenitis


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