The Adventures of Ninkasi

Captain Steve

Captain Steve

I’ve been boating and sailing since my teens and consider myself lucky to have grown up in Barrie with some friends that enjoyed water skiing, boating, camping and spending time at the cottage (and perhaps the odd beer, well OK the even ones too). I was able to enjoy this lifestyle mainly due to the good nature of my friends and many times at the expense of their hard earned money (thanks Ron, John, Pete and Greg).

So, the first boat I owned was a Nash 20, which for the most part ended up being a place for myself, my brother and two of our friends (Greg and Steve) to hone both our sailing and drinking skills (ahh the adventures of a misspent youth). It was a small boat, especially for four grown men but it planted the seed that led me to embrace boating as part of my future lifestyle. After spending about five or six years in different marinas on Lake Simcoe, the boat sat in the backyard while we worked on some future additions to the crew. Eventually the lure of the water grew and we decided to make the move to the big water of Georgian Bay where we could actually do more than just day sailing. This lasted for a few more years until we finally out grew the Nash (I was also tired of waking up with a stiff back and thought it would be nice if I could stand up to put my pants on).

So now that we have the Pearson (our last boat), my plan is to build up my boating experience, learn some other languages and improve my maintenance skills to enable me to eventually take her down to the Caribbean and beyond. Over the years, during the winter months I’ve been able to work on some of this by taking every course I could from the Canadian Power and Sail Squadron including boating, piloting, advanced piloting, VHF, boat maintenance, weather (of which I’ve forgotten most of), junior navigator and navigator (the last two are celestial navigation courses).

Kathy (Galley Slave and Admiral)

Kathy Kathy has been taking part in the sailing adventures since shortly after I got the Nash. In that time she has managed to gain some good sailing and boating experiences. There are still a few times when she’s not very comfortable driving the boat but that seems limited to when it’s getting pretty rough or when we are docking the boat. Over the years we’ve managed to get into some good working habits. When we are anchoring (or leaving an anchorage), I’ll head up to the bow to handle the ground tackle and Kathy will take the wheel. It seems she has a much more comfortable sleep when she knows that it was her that backed down and set the anchor.

Another system we’ve developed is when we first arrive at the boat we will load up a couple carts and head to the boat, where Kathy will go onboard and try to find a place for everything while I continue to make repeated trips back to the car for more stuff. Somehow she manages to find a spot for everything and we still have the ability to move around. Now that we have the bigger boat it should make her storage life a bit easier. I'm sure you are probably thinking that since we have a bigger boat we will just start bringing up more stuff and it won’t be any different, but the load size is actually limited by the size of the van, so unless we start bringing up 2 vehicles that should not be a problem.

Alex in the Poison Ivy

Alex (Toothpick)

Alex first started boating with us when we moved the first boat out of the backyard and onto Georgian Bay; she was probably about two. For the first few years she would usually be asleep within 20 minutes after leaving the marina. In hindsight this was probably a blessing since it meant we didn’t have to keep her entertained and we could enjoy the sail. By the time Alex was almost 6 months old we knew that boating was going to play a larger part of our lives, so we decided to start her in swimming lessons. This turned out to be a great decision (which means it was probably Kathy’s idea) as now she is a very comfortable and capable swimmer. Alex Jumping of the Dock

I asked the girls what they would like to say about themselves in this introduction and Alex mentioned that some of the things she enjoys most about our boating adventures are being able to go swiming off the boat, tubing and jumping off the dock. So far her favourite place has been visiting Thornbury and swiming at the local beach. Alex is also currently working towards getting her boating license so she will be able to drive the dingy.

Emma in goggles

Emma (The Walking Bruise)

The walking bruise is a fitting description for Emma. She’s not really accident prone but if someone is going to get hurt, then 9 times out of 10 it will be Emma. For the last 5 years Emma has been able to keep the Bandaid and ointment companies in business. She is definitely more adventurous than Alex and usually won’t hesitate to try something new. Every once in awhile she will surprise us and we have no luck at getting her to try something which would seem right up her alley.

Emma on a rock

At the beginning of our 2007 season (May) Emma came running back to the boat with a great idea, she wanted to get her bathing suit on and go in swimming. Try as we might, we could not convince her that this wasn’t a good idea. She had it in her mind that since she was in swimming the last time we were up at the boat (the previous September) that she should be able to now, so we told to her to give it a try. Well I would be surprised if both ankles even got wet before she leaped back onto the beach.

Emma wanted to add that so far her favourite place that we’ve visited is Parry Sound and that she really enjoys being able to go swimming in the lake and to be pulled around in the tube.

Finnegan behind the wheel

Finnegan (Sir Naps Alot or Dumbass)

Finnegan is the newest addtion to the crew. He joined us in the fall of 2010, which gave him time to get used to us and to be house broken before that start of the boating season. He has taken very well to the boat and his first time up he mastered the stairs (up and down) and learned to walk the deck like he owned it.

Kathy’s nephew Jeff, refers to Finny as a young dog with an old soul. So far his favourite things are to lie in the cockpit in the sun or sitting on the boat deck watching everything going on. He's not too impressed with his life jacket but has gotten used to it.

Cool ass Finnegan

At home he will usually sleep in until eight, however for some reason known only to him he has chosen his boat wake up time to be 5:30am or 6:00am. Usually this would not be a problem however it would seem he believes that I should also be aware of this and I will usually be awaken with a paw to the head.

His biggest worry in life is that he might over sleep and miss his nap. One of Finnigan's favourite thigs to do is to chew on a plastic pop bottle. He absolutely loves to chew on these and I have no idea why. It does make for a cheap easily replaceable toy.