A Mother's Day Getaway

Published in the May 2013 Issue May 2013

This idea was conceived during a wine and dine event with two of the guys ACTUALLY carrying through with the Mother’s Day plan. As word got out on the dock, we soon had five couples with a few kids and pets who wanted to participate on this first annual event.

(I actually believe Tom and Jeff planned this because it was cheaper than the $39.95 per person Mother’s Day Brunch at the yacht club.)

In honor of Mother’s Day, the men decided to take their wives on a venturous overnight get-away. Not at a five star hotel and not to a spa with mud facials, but instead, mud squishing between our toes and mosquito spray applied on our bodies. Not exactly the same scent of oils one would expect or desire. And the candle lit dinner never happened unless you wanted citronella buckets burning as you dined.

Some of the participants had never ventured very far from the marina and were very concerned about clearing the bridge, avoiding stumps, running over sand bars and any other debris left in the lake. Of course, everything depends on the water depth, the height of your fly bridge, if you have a depth finder and if you trust your captain. Naturally, our boat was the first voyager to go under the bridge, and the one who kept all the others in the river channel and safe from any unforeseen misfortunes. My husband Captain Tom would be the one to blame if anything did go wrong since he was the one leading the parade of vessels.

Upon the journey to our favorite spot in the national forest, we realized we couldn’t communicate very well with the other houseboats. It’s important to make sure you have cell phone service, or at the very least are on the same radio channel. Most of the time there were no issues, but it is hard to play charades from the upper deck swaying from side-to-side while yelling into the wind.

Luckily, for all the captains who arrived shortly after we dropped anchor, Tom was still in his swimsuit and in the water. I guess they assumed he was the valet houseboat parking attendant. He carefully tied all our “floating boatels” together and planted everyone’s anchors safely in the slimy mud. Carefully he considered the wind conditions and accordingly allowed ample space for the buoys to gently rock us and not roll us, but still allowed all the boats to be attached for easy access to one another’s boats.

Since this was a treat for us mothers, we anticipated the men to do all the planning, shopping, prepping, cooking, cleaning and waiting on us. After all, we were the queens for the weekend. Well that’s what we were promised anyway. Thank goodness when our boat ran out of toilet paper our neighbor had extra. In return when someone didn’t have all of their ingredients for their favorite salad, someone else could oblige. The men may have forgotten to check their meal planning and inventory, but they did have propane and plenty of fuel to run all the generators for the night. And mysteriously they never ran out of their favorite beverages!

Another situation one must think ahead is where will your pet go to the restroom? Of course our dog Bailee will go on a small throw rug in the houseboat when she doesn’t have permission, but when we beg her to please feel free to use it, she will not. So off to the shore we go.

We all had a memorable weekend for our first annual Mother’s Day getaway last year. We even had homemade pancakes and fruit for breakfast Sunday morning. Not exactly the same brunch as the yacht club, but we have high hopes for this year. I think I would rate it at three stars last year, but we will encourage the men to keep their day jobs, learn to multi-task, think like a woman while organizing and continue to make it even more eventful.

This year we will have even more participants and will include others who are not houseboat owners. We already have been asked by other couples to please include them in all our events, even though they don’t own houseboats. In the future it will be even bigger and better and we can call it our Dream Escape. And the men will be better trained and in uniforms with serving trays, serve us on fine china plates rather than Chinette, and …and…and…

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