The next morning I drove down to the docks. About a quarter mile from the gate, there was something in the ditch. I slowed down. I took a look. It was a sign, spattered with mud. “Ortho Docks” it read. At the gate, a new sign had been hastily hung in its place.
Under New Management
Shipping – Cruises – Yacht Club
I proceeded with caution. It was a busy place. The cargo ships were offloading goods, so I stopped to check in with the freight master. When I gave him my name, his eyebrows took an express elevator to his hairline. He gave me an odd look, but didn’t say anything. I told him I’d be hanging around.
I passed by the cruise ship LCMS Pinafore. There was the captain on deck, overseeing a group of tourists, all dressed alike, and making their way off the ship. The back of their shirts said, “H-T/P-T”. “There goes trouble,” I thought to myself.
I moved on down the docks to tour the area where the yachts were moored. People give them funny names. A man sunning himself on his Hip O’Crit glanced up from under the brim of his “I’m a Lutheran” hat, and addressed nobody in particular. “This Tappert guy’s a jerk!” I walked on.
The next yacht held the biggest sound system I’d ever seen. The Happy Clapper. Why was I not surprised?
Number three was the Biz Marks II. Looked more like a mini-battle ship to me.
The owner of number four, Ruthie K’s Dreamboat, apparently liked a challenge. In stead of a motor, she was outfitted with albs for sails and stoles for rigging. Now that just wasn’t right!
I was being hailed by the freight master. And carefully observed by the Pinafore’s captain.