Boating In The


  by Bonzai Yak

  112 pages

Chapter 2: Territory Boats (part f)


Everyplace is the best place to be, especially in a boat. How can you be out of place? Still, even so, it's good to know all of the views that there are whatever your present view happens to be. So call out whatever you see from yourself. It's useful to share what you're seeing you see, the rest of the crew will know what to do and what not. Spot a whale shooting out a spout? Shout it out so the others won't miss it. Getting tossed to and fro by the waves? Let the crew know. Whoever's in the bow can keep an eye out for the rocks that created the swell. See a school of fish going by? Let others know, someone might want to throw out a line and catch a small snack. In the bow and you want to tack? Call out the change so the rest can follow. Coming about! Hard a lee! Everyone won't see the same as you, but since we agreed that we all are seeing the same single thing from a different view, then the more that you say then the easier it is for the whole crew to sail together.

Course you can say too much. Don't call out the sights from yourself, let the Territory call through you. Just don't hold back that's all I'm saying, only don't hold forth, I'm saying that too. Nothing worse than somebody calling their own appalling song. But now that I mention it songs are useful. On a long distance sail a song from the crew can go a long way. And chants give an even better chance to enhance the boat as a whole. Here's one I know that works for me:


Some songs I know work better than others. What Shall We Do With The Drunken Sailor gives a few laughs and after a while you can add in new verses to suit your own crew. Homeless is good if you do all the parts. We Were Sailing Along On Moonlight Bay works well if you know how to echo in harmony. There's shanties galore along every shore and you can use the best ones anytime that you like. Make up your own if your heart works that way. I was working up one the other day and it should be ready to sing sometime soon. I've Sailed The Sea With The Seven Hags (And The Hags Have Sailed With Me), it's a bittersweet rag with a bite or two; it won't make me rich but it does my heart good. No matter how strange your own song might seem, sing it out anyway, bring out your dreams. Singing and chanting can help the crew to disappear and the boat as a whole likes to troll a song as it sails along through the Territory.

Should tell you about two other boat shapes you might find useful from time to time. The single boat is a good way to scout and when we sail a two masted ship I always like to send somebody out in a single along to the side. Singles are quick, they can dart in to shore to check out a bay or a small fiord. For singles you leave the bungee cords wound up around your pole. You paddle the same as you would with a crew, but in a single boat it's only just you. Only way to go when you're all by yourself.

That's not really true, there's another way and some of us say it's best of all. The no-boat. Forget the poles and the bungee and clips, just put on the cap that you keep in the stern and sail away. Seeing the Territory just as it is becomes a practice after a while, it slips in on you whenever you need it. It isn't so much that you choose not to use your boat that day, it's more that the boat disappears itself and you find yourself boating anyway. Can't say it's all that easy though, not at the start. It's better at first to roll the poles and raise a mast with everyone else. But after a while you'll realize that you're always boating wherever you are. Whether you have a pole in hand or a hole in your belly there's nothing at all to understand. Boaters boat wherever they are and I daresay you do it sometimes yourself when no-one is looking, especially not you. But the no-boat is definitely not for beginners. If you try it before you can already do it, you'll only just fool yourself. You'll make it much harder to sail away in the usual way, so my advice to you is to stay away from the no-boat entirely. Unless of course you're already in one and then there's nothing to say so I won't and neither will you.

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