My family didn’t have any cars, but we once had a pleasure boat. My father sometimes drove it to go somewhere like the dental clinic. Actually, it ran fast, because there are no traffic lights. But it was very strange that cars were so popular in my town even though it was a fisherman’s town. Today I’d like to write about why such an odd situation occurred.
My father wanted to have a pleasure boat when I was a little child. My mother insisted that a wooden boat should be better than a fiber-reinforced plastic boat, because it was easy to modify for fishing. Actually, some neighborhoods had the wooden boats with the outboard motors for fishing. They could easily face-nail tools onto theirs. She even said that she would agree to buy the most expensive wooden boat in our town, but not the FRP one. She thought that he wanted to buy it for fishing, because he liked to go fishing very much. Boat fishing was a very popular hobby in our town. But he decided to buy the FRP one, a carrying out his original intention. He wanted to waterski, too, he thought that wooden boat was not in style for waterskiing.
He got the license for driving a small boat. Maybe it was easy for him, because he was a professional sailor. Curiously enough, he has never gotten his driver’s license. He said he was once to get a driver’s license in America. An agent said to him that it is much easier to get it in the US than in Japan, and the international license would allow him to drive in Japan, and almost all he needed to get was some money for the procedure. Of course, the agent was a faker, my father and some his coworkers were cheated. It always happens. After that he lost his motivation to get it. Actually he worked at sea for a very long time, so he didn’t need a car so much. Now he lives in urban area, where there is enough public transportation. I think he will have no need to get it in the future.
We lived in a house just by the mouth of a bending river, so my house was surrounded on three sides by the water. The sea is across the road from the house, and there was the river on the opposite side, and the river turned just as it ran by my house and out to the sea. There is a bridge on the outlet. On both sides of the river, there are some houses that have bamboo shelves above the river to mooring the boats. We often had dinner on the shelves on summer evening, because it was cool above the water. My father also made a bamboo shelf above the river from the backyard. Across the river, there was my grandparents’ house. They lived in with my uncle’s family. There was a shelf there too, for mooring their wooden boat. We often called to each other across the river. For example, when it started to rain we needed to get the laundry in, we let each other know with a loud voice. So all my family have very loud voices.
My father prepared many things: life jackets for the whole family within for children, swimming goggles, swimming fins, snorkels, etc. Then it came: the day the boat arrived. It had a white body and a red bottom, and a dark wind shield. What a cool appearance it had. It must have the fastest speed in the town, because all of the other boats were wooden and made for fishing. Then he put it on the river, and he rode on it. He made a test run. It certainly ran faster than the other boats. It met all of his expectations. I also rode the boat with him, and ran it through the sea. He made me stand holding the handle in front of the seat, just like the waterskiing posture, and turned right against the coming waves. The boat bounced up and down very hard; it was exciting. We enjoyed driving on the sea. It was great day.
But then, before he went to buy the waterskiing goods, he realized the very important fact that he couldn’t waterski when he drove the boat by himself.