Bound for Avalon
20 September 2007 | Catalina Island
We left Marina del Rey and the Pacific Mariners Yacht Club this morning. And just in time, too. Maddie was showing a dangerous inclination toward a career as a pool hustler. It was a funny contrast: When she wasn't asking to watch "Lady and the Tramp" on the club's big screen she was ordering up another Shirley Temple and looking for a quarter and a worthy opponent to play 8-ball on the club's pool table. And Sophie was right there with her. (Always.)
All kidding aside, the club was a great place for us to hang out and definitely one of the most friendly. We highly recommend it to anyone passing through. Just ask for Sparky.
We left around 9:00 in the morning and were assisted out by Sparky and a few of his fellow PMYC'rs. As promised they got our boat out of the undersized (for us) slip as easily as they'd gotten us in. And we were on our way.
About a half mile outside the breakwater for Marina Del Rey John noticed a small, red and black inflatable boat flying toward us at an amazing speed. John rightly surmised that it was a Coast Guard boat. I slowed the boat and they came alongside. They asked when was the last time we'd been inspected. (Never.) Then they said they would inspect us. (Okay.) They asked if we had any firearms on board. (No.) So three of the four Coasties came aboard and proceeded to inspect our vessel to assure that we were operating in a safe and legal manner. They looked at our documentation, emergency flares, flotation devices, etc. Soon after they'd boarded I looked over my shoulder and saw one of their big white-with-orange stripe cutters standing off just about 50 yards away. Obviously the "mother ship".
I bet if we'd actually been running guns or drugs this would be a much more interesting episode. All the same it was still pretty exciting for us. And I have to commend each of the officers for their very professional, courteous and respectful manner.