It turns out, almost everything. We’ve had something of a black cloud following us these last few weeks. It’s nothing serious but there’s been a string of bad luck and I’m hoping the streak is almost over.
It started a week and half ago when a lightning storm hit way too close to home. Our crew had been on the float wrapping up an epic bag count last Thursday morning and came in to shore to drop the bags off. The rain hit right as we got back to land so we took a quick break and waited for the heavy stuff to pass. An hour or so later, we were back on the dock where Catie and I were pulling out silos getting prepped to grade some seed. The sky got dark again and Berg made the call: Head indoors. Now.
I ran over to the rowing dock to help Catie get some stuff situated and passed Christian who was trying to get his silos in a safe place. He stayed on the dock but Catie and I made it up to the woodshed with Maggie, Eva, Will, and Berg. Berg ran back out for something and while he was gone, the rain picked up. A few minutes later, a huge clap of thunder crashed over our heads. At the same time, I looked towards the wood shed door and saw a pink flash. Lightning strike. And it was close. We all hit the deck waiting for another boom but instead, the door opened and in came Christian and Berg, looking scared shitless. The lightning had hit a sailboat mast that was moored about 20 yards from the rowing dock. Christian had seen the sky turn pink and did a belly flop onto the plastic part of the dock. He said he could smell the electricity from where he was. Steve of Jeeves was in the process of rowing from Billy’s float back to land and was within a few feet of the sailboat that got struck. Very close call but thankfully, no one was hurt (not so sure about the sailboat, though).
The next day, Berg got hit by a car. (He’s still on crutches but we’re hoping to see him back on the farm this week.)
The 4th, from what I hear, was pretty spectacular. Some of the crew plus a few growers along with friends got some fireworks lit from the float (Dave got a great shot of it).
And then this past week, we had another round of bad luck. Skip came down with a stomach bug (after chipping his tooth on a bagel). We couldn’t manage to shake the bad weather until Thursday this week. And our white boat, the Carolina, decided to die while I was about to drive it from the float back to shore. The motor turned twice and then just cut out. I was already untied and couldn’t do anything but stand there, fussing with the throttle, watching folks on the float watch me drift away. Thankfully, the current carried me over to a nearby moored sailboat so I tied myself up and waited for Mark to get out there to rescue me (he called me a good mariner; “at least you got yourself tied up to something”). I was also pretty thankful that the problem wasn’t something I had caused. I think it ended up being a fuse or faulty wire, but either way, the Carolina is out of commission until next week. As Greg Morris said, “If you’re going to work on the water, better know a thing or two about how to fix a boat.”
Skip was still pretty out of it on Friday but we managed to do a double deploy: we got about 600 bags out to both the river and the middle of the bay during low tide. One team went to the river, the other went to the cages and we all had a pretty successful morning. Finally: the babies are in the water! We still have more to get out there but I think we’re officially over the hump.