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Aug 10
fiction challenge: Boat
mlc123's picture

The Key Variable in the Life of a Boat

Here’s the thing about being a boat: your quality of life depends entirely upon the humans who take care of you. As for me, I suppose I’m lucky. They haven’t traded me out for another, even though I’m old and my motor doesn’t work much. They always bail me out when the rain collects. By far, the worst part about being a boat is when it rains, and the water just pools into you. Weighs you down, and gives you the feeling that if it rained hard or long enough, it could pull you down forever into the depths of the lake. You have absolutely no sense of how deep the water goes, when all you do is float on top of it, so for all I know, just tied to that red wooden dock, I could sink a hundred miles to my doom. 

But all this is a bit dramatic. It’s an okay gig, for the most part, being a boat. They use me mostly for fishing, so naturally, I have witnessed great success, and of course, seen fish get off scot free with a worm, but no hook. There’s a certain tranquility to early morning fishing. The stillness of the lake, the near-silence of a couple of focused fishermen, the only noise the call of a loon or some other bird. Humans are temperamental creatures even at the best of times, but somehow, no great fuss is put up about an unsuccessful fishing trip. The only audible reactions are sighs of resignation, and the gentle click of lines being reeled in for the day. No shouting and very little whining unless the children are brought along. 

Children. Well, the children of those that I had once seen as children themselves, making up for their impatience with their eagerness to see and do new things, They lose this gradually as they get older. They gain patience, yes, but lose the sense of wonder. Then the adults have children of their own, and they get to marvel at how the world looks through fresh eyes all over again. If I said rain is the worst part of being a boat, this may be the best, or at least the most interesting part. All in all, like I said, not a bad…well, not life exactly, but existence perhaps. I’m in good hands at least, and I’m grateful for that.

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