Quahogging and Boats

I remember going quahogging before the tide went all the way out and we were still able to stand in the water while we did the twist and kept digging our feet into the sand beneath the ocean shore. When we felt some quahogs in the holes we dug we’d have to bend down and grab them before they dug deeper and we’d have to dig some more. (This was in the 1950’s, before the twist was invented mind you) Our father would get us out there before the tide went all the way out because that was the time everybody and his brother would come out, at low tide.

The quahogs tasted best when they were made into clam cakes. Georges made the best ones, but they still had sand in them, not as much as ours did though. The tastiest ones came from Rocky Point’s Pavilion.  The seagulls loved them too, and if you weren’t careful, they’d snatch them right out of your hands and fly away and you were left without any and crying. We did love the ocean though.

I remember when our parents had the boat, sometimes our father would let us ride on the bow, on the wrong side of the windshield. We would sit against the windshield, and hook our arms over the windshield and hang on for dear life, because our father loved to fly across the wake of other boats, it was no wonder why we always had arms that were black and blue. Now, if mom was with us, she never would let us do that, but we always had to sit inside the boat with life jackets on and buckled up tight. I don’t know why, we all knew how to swim, our father made sure of that while we were young, long before we started school.

When mom would come with us, she always would ski behind the boat, and she was good at it. We would watch her as dad would find the biggest wake from the biggest boats out there and he would just bounce across them. We loved it and mom did pretty good and didn’t fall too much, but when she did, our father would slow the boat down and turn back to pick her up. Most of the time she would just put her skis back on and get up as he started out slowly, and when she was all the way up, he would pick up speed and go flyin’ across the wakes again.

Oh, we certainly had some good times out there on that boat. I remember it had a big, green Mercury motor that started with a pull cord like a lawn mower. Dad let me try to pull it a time or two, but I never could pull it hard enough to even have it turn over. One time I’m not sure how this happened, or why, but I remember the fog. It closed in on us kind of quick it seemed like. The quiet was all I could hear with the fog horns of a boat, or the lighthouse. I don’t remember that well, I was only about six or seven. Sound traveled far in the fog, and we had to keep totally silent until help came. I don’t know if they happened upon us, or if my dad had lit flares, and I don’t remember why we couldn’t go anywhere, but we had to be towed and that is probably why we were stuck in the fog hanging on to a buoy. I saw the rope between us and I’m glad, I was cold and it was dark, and I was scared. I couldn’t wait to get back home so I could look at the big acorn tree and watch the branches that looked like big fluffy clouds, when they had leaves, dance across the ceiling in my room. I loved watching them until I fell asleep.


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