“I wrote this after the death of my dear friend David Smethurst. It was written for his wife Joyce, also my dearest friend from university days at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver.”
On the rare occasion of two sail boats sailing without their captains or crew!
At A Chance Meeting Of The Sail Boats
‘Danielle’ a Cape Cod CatBoat and
‘Obelisk’ a manly sloop at Jedediah Island.
Danielle: Ahoy ‘Obelisk’ this is ‘Danielle’ may I come along side.
Obelisk: A shapely cat like you can rub my bumpers any day.
Cuddle up. I like that Garden design you are wearing?
Danielle: Who’s your skipper? Is he as fresh as you are?
Obelisk: Mayday, Mayday, and Mayday I lost him.
Danielle: Do you mean ‘man over board, man over board’ Lost at sea!
Obelisk: NO. I always looked after my Master David. I even took him around Vancouver’s Island.
He just didn’t come back one day. Later his son Ian told me about his wake. That’s a party to celebrate a persons’ life not the sparkling foam I leave behind.
Danielle: So you’re fast in more ways than one, and a braggart.
What was your captains’ family name?
Obelisk: Smethurst it was, and a fine gentleman he wanted to be.
Danielle: My goodness, the heavens are clearing, my master Wally knew David well. They grew up together in Brentwood Bay, went to North Saanich High School, and later at UBC. where he met is life long love, Miss Joyce. But why do you hesitate in calling him a gentleman?
Obelisk: Well he was in many ways, but for his messes. He’d pull every living thing from the briny sea, slop them on my decks then gut and dissect, dissect and gut until I was stained and smelly. He seamed to revel in it. That’s not to mention his socks!
Danielle: My word! He didn’t change since UBC. He was a terror in the garret kitchen of the 4th Avenue apartment. He would cut into the bellies of rats on Barry’s breadboard and keep dead animal parts near butter in the fridge. Dirty shorts and socks in the living room! My master’s brother Barry was a ‘Lit’ major and as tidy as Mr. Dress Up. He was appalled. But somehow they stuck it out together, always best friends.
Obelisk: Bully for him. Yes, David was a charmer and a good man for all his messes. He knew how to sail well, even taught a whole generation how to do it. There was Ian with Christina and Jeremy. There was Nadene with Roland ,Tristian and Kara. Others too in the yacht club he formed.Too bad he also lured Jeremy into gutting and dissecting! He took some risks so I got my share of bumps and bruises. But I loved that guy!
Danielle: I heard that David’s energy; enthusiasm and drive made him a fine teacher. He could be eloquent even when not imbibing. And could he ever whistle up a tune!
Obelisk: Will you raft with me tonight? I need you close. I can picture a day here with David at Jedediah Island. With family and kids!
Danielle: OK Obelisk. What a sunset!! Good that you’ll have David’s family for comfort! .
“Let’s doze together in the goodly ripples still spreading from David’s life.”