Saturday, November 19, 2005

Sailboats + Kenju = One Sick Woman! And a Cruise to Nassau


Put me in a sailboat, and I am going to turn green. It doesn't seem to matter how large or small they are either. On one of our company trips to Hilton Head Island, we went together with three or four other couples and rented a sailboat for the day, complete with skipper and crew. All set for a gorgeous day on the water, we arrived at the dock in Harbour Town full of piss and vinegar (and some benadryl).

It was my first time on a sailboat, although I had been on motor boats numerous times. Our trip out into the channel between Hilton Head, Daufuskie Island and the mainland was to last 4-5 hours. The day was perfect for sailing; just enough wind to catch the sails, but not enough to cause problems. We had been out of the circular harbor about 10 minutes when I turned as green as a pickle, and my stomach began to protest the constant motion. Imagine my embarrassment at being the only person on board to get queasy.

The captain told me to lie down on the bench seat, saying that if I got my stomach parallel to the ocean, I would be okay. The trouble was, there were only enough seats for about 8 people and if I was lying on one side, at least 3-4 people would have to stand up during the cruise. They offered to go back to the dock and let me out, but I didn't want to cause problems for everyone else, so I managed to tough it out, flat on my back, until we got back to the dock hours later. It was the worst afternoon of my life!

A few years after that, we decided to take a short cruise. I asked my doctor for something to help me with seasickness, and he prescribed Scopolamine patches. Before we got on the cruise ship, I applied the patch behind my ear, as instructed. The ship was wonderful; there was so much to see and do and after one full afternoon and evening at sea, I was fine and had not experienced any queasiness. The patch was making me sleepy, however, so I decided to remove it, so I could go to the casino and play the slots. Bad decision! Less than one hour after removing the patch, I was so queasy and dizzy as to hardly be able to walk straight. The rest of the night was spent in the stateroom, lying flat and clutching my belly.

The next morning, we were docked in Nassau and after breakfast, we debarked to tour the town. One of our daughters was with us, and she and I naturally gravitated to the shoe store on the main street. Hubs has no patience with shoe-shopping (ladies, can you empathize?), so we were quickly ushered down the street to a pipe and tobacco shop, something much more to his liking. Daughter and I decided to wait on a street bench, since we were no more interested in men's pipes than he was in women's shoes. While he was in the pipe shop, he was surprised by people from our own neighborhood here in NC, who had come to Nassau on another cruise ship, and had no idea that we would be here. We had no idea that they were going on a cruise either - so it was indeed a big surprise to run into them so far from home. Their son was accompanying them on their trip, so the six of us decided to go into town that night to the casino, for a show and some gambling.

Have you ever taken a taxicab in Nassau? Perhaps I should ask....."Have you ever taken a taxicab in Nassau and lived to tell the story?" We took our lives in our hands, and all six of us thought we might die that night. Taxi drivers in Nassau make the most money by making many trips from the cruise ship docks to the casinos and back. That means that they drive at breakneck speed, in order to complete the trip in as small as time as possible. I have never been so scared in my life, even on the most thrilling carnival rides, while upside down and hanging by a "thread". The neighbor we were with said that as a fighter pilot in Vietnam and he was not as scared then as he had been in that taxi. In the postcard on the right above, do you see the roadway on the lower left, leading to the large ship with the "C" on the smokestack? The taxi drivers enter that roadway at about 50 mph, and drive so close to the end of the dock that you are certain they will fly off it and lodge in the side of the cruise ship. I am not kidding!

All that made for some memorable moments though, and we certainly will remember our time in Nassau. Needless to say, I was careful to wear my patch for the return boat trip back to Florida. We had only one other incident worth mentioning.
To be continued tomorrow..........

21 comments:

margalit said...

I did link to you below, so I'm here again just so you know I didn't miss you.

Michele....

OldOldLady Of The Hills said...

Hi There Kenju...LOL..Guess what! Michele sent me tonight...BUT you know, I would be coming by anyway...
What a story!!! That patch does seem to work miracles....a good friend of mine wore one on a short boat trip, and he had NEVER been able to be on a boat before without being sick!!!
I've never seen Naussau..the driver's there sound really nuts, but obviously for them...'time is money'...At the risk of your life, and there's too!!

Looking forward to the next installment Judy...

Carmi said...

I feel your pain. I spent much of my childhood mastering a range of small watercraft, from canoes to kayaks to Laser-class sailboats. So when I was invited onto a fishing boat on Lake Erie, I eagerly accepted.

I figured I didn't need Gravol or anything because, hey, I was a water baby. Lifeguard, great boater, the works. Bad move.

When we left the dock, I was fine. The powerful cruiser planed on its engines and I sat in the back and watched the wake expand behind us. With the wind in my face, I was rockin'.

Then we reached the fishing grounds and slowed down to idle so we could troll for fish. The boat started rocking - Lake Erie swells are really unpredictable because it's such a shallow and large body of water. Between that and the exhaust, I turned green faster than you could say "go fish".

I ended up hurling over the side multiple times. In between, I sat leaning against a bulkhead, and ended up with a severe sunburn on one side of my face. I looked like Two-Face from Batman.

My ever-empathetic colleagues loved it when I "chummed" over the side, because they said every time I did, it attracted fish and they caught something. I became their good luck charm that day.

Haven't been back on the lake since.

srp said...

We went deep see fishing once off the coast of Delaware. It was not a good day for it, the ocean was rough. No one caught anything but sand sharks. My mom and my brother both were green and groaning. I don't think mom will ever go out again.

I did fine. Well, I didn't handle their upchucking well, still don't.

srp said...

I forgot. I use SiteMeter for my counter and it tells what number each visitor is. But I looked at yours and you have a lot more features, although I couldn't find that specific one. Maybe you could ask them, they might answer an e-mail.

Maggie said...

sorry to hear how sick u got.
Michele sent me
Maggie

Erin said...

Can't wait to hear the rest of the story. Michele sort of sent me, as I was going through the comments, you popped up and I had to come see you!

Have a great weekend!

mar said...

I enjoy reading your stories. I am married to a hobby sailor and we have had sailing boats. I always get sea sick. I have tried everything, but the good things make you sleepy - like you experienced -so you cannot enjoy the trip anyways. I lie down and try to sleep on my own when I feel seasickness is after me. Father and son are absolutely seasick-free. We don't have a boat now but hubby is browsing catalogs just in case we run into lots of money so he can buy a catameran. I get sick on those too. Had wonderful vacations sailing the Danish islands when we lived in northern Germany and our son was little, though.I could post that too, except I don't have a fine memory like you do! Have a nice day.

sage said...

Hey Kenju, love your description of sailing--nice writing.

I enjoy sailing but am lucky that I've never been sick sailing--the only time I can remember being sick was on a larger motor boat waiting to make a second sucba dive. The smell of diesel fuel got to me... And even then I didn't throw up, but I wanted to.

Ben said...

A visceral description! Great post.

mar said...

Michele sent me this time to say hi, kenju!

Lucy said...

This reminds me of a cruise i took with a girlfriend in 1985. I did not have a patch; I eventually got use to the motion - but felt like i was still on the ship for a week following the cruise.

I also relate to that taxi-cab ride. Our adventures were quite similar...but on St. Thomas. It was frightening.

Ready for the rest of the story now...
smile

Maria said...

I can relate to the drowsiness problem. As a child, we took a trip to Missouri and because I had a tendency to be car sick, my mom gave me dramadine. I slept the whole way there and back and when I was awake I was a zombie.

Enjoy your cruise stories. We are off on a ten day Mexican Riveria cruise right after Christmas.

brendalove@gmail.com said...

I've been seasick before, its a horrible feeling. I used Dramamine once and I was too sleepy.

TC said...

Hi, Michele sent me. I don't get seasick often but when I have it is really really awful.

dena said...

A cruise on a large sailboat? My dream vacation! I love sailing.

visiting from michele's today...

Suburban Turmoil said...

Oh wow. Seasickness.

We went deep sea fishing a few years ago and all 8 people on the boat got horribly seasick... Everyone except me and the crew!

It sucked.

I never get seasick. I think maybe it's because I frequently get vertigo and so I'm used to feeling off-kilter? Who knows?

utenzi said...

Michele sent me to you this fine (but cold!) Saturday morning, Judy.

First of all, congratulations to your daughter on passing the Bar exam. That's great. I'm surprised it's been 3 days since I've visited your blog so I'd not seen that post yet.

I'm so sorry to hear about how tough it is for you to be on rolling water. I guess it's a good thing we have drugs for that--but it's unfortunate that you get sleepy as a result. Maybe having those drugs would have helped you on that cab ride!

Peter said...

Hi Judy, that's a fun experience I've only had a couple of times, (out of many) but certainly not enjoyable.
Sad loss for Hoss, in your next post.

Weary Hag said...

Oh ew. I think I would have been right there with you ready to be ill on the sailboat. It sounds like it was a great trip except for the sickness and the taxi ride! Imagine if the taxi driver also ended up being the pilot of the cruise ship? hahaha (sorry)

Kim said...

I have motion sickness so bad I get dizzy if I change the channels on the TV too fast.....