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Family on a pontoon

Boating Brings Family and Friends Together


Boating days usually include sun, warmth and gentle breezes. If that isn't a great start to family and friend bonding, what is? There is no better pastime than being out on the water on a nice day or three.


Some boaters like to sit quietly and fish. Others like to jump into the water a few thousand times and swim. Just floating in one place is gratifying while having a cool drink with nice people. Off in a quiet cove, boaters can even take naps, and no one is the wiser.


Getting the boat ready to launch can be a bonding experience if at least one person knows what to do. If two know what to do, it's a breeze. Getting the boat out of the water can also be smooth with experience and rational thought. The boat taker-outers should remain sober. Launching and removal are like rites to be appreciated for the marking of a good day, if not a superior day.


Let's face it. A cloudy day on water is better than many sunny days on land. It's no wonder our ancestors felt drawn to the sea and the freedom of sailing on the wind. Again with the breeze, images of flying along over the waves arise. Don't fight it; embrace it. Yes, it's an escape. No, it's not a bad thing.


Boating can be an individual enjoyment, but it's a natural family activity. The kids can get the life jackets and unwrap the tie rope, Mom unpacks the lunch out on the calm water and Dad can sit and relax. Mission accomplished.


Boating with friends may be a more adult venture with adult beverages. Wear the jackets and keep the captain sober, and all will be well. Regale the captain with appreciative drinks upon landing, after the boat is out and settled. Someone can drive him or her home; it's only fair.


Pontoon boats are so perfect for a lovely day on the water. They hold several people and are not likely to capsize. The newer ones look almost Bond-like and cool. It's not your grandfather's pontoon. Water skiing, anyone?


Kids get tired. Let them lie down and rest in the boat; there's room. Enjoy the peace and quiet. Read, converse, stare into space and daydream. Come up with a new invention and make money. Well, maybe not that last one, but relaxation is the point.