Ten Years

In this sudden crawling of time between Christmas and New Year, we’ve caught up with the fact that it’s the coming end of the decade. I’ve just realised for us, we sold our house in 2010. Now it’s almost 2020.

You’d think we might be really good at boating by now. Ha! Where do I start? Woke up yesterday to a series of situations. First, Lu’s ear had gotten sore again. Enough. It was time to see the doctor. We let go of the marine park buoy and went back to Terre-De-Haut.

After we took one buoy in town, we realised we were uncomfortably close to another boat. Decided to move to another buoy, further out. No problem, right? After all, we’ve been doing this for ten years.

French buoys need to be lifted in entirety to put a line through. No leading line or lifting ring. Our method: I catch, Jack lifts with his ox strength. I feed the line through.

This is where we found ourselves. Me hunching down with the second line: ‘Is here good?’

Jack talking through his jaw: ‘Yep, here is good. Put the line through.’

Me putting the line through: ‘Wait, that’s not good.’

Jack still holding the heavy buoy: ‘No, that’s not good at all. It’s twisted.’

Me wincing: ‘Let me get it out.’

Jack getting redder and redder: ‘Do it again.’

‘Are you sure you don’t want to let it down and take a breath.’

Jack looking like he may burst: ‘No, just do it!’

I did it. Then Jack’s back went.

An hour later, we were at the doctor’s – this time with two patients. Dr Miguel greeted us warmly – especially as the whole of Les Saintes were sitting in his waiting area. ‘Tout le Monde,’ he was saying on his phone as we closed the door.

He was fantastic – and no, Jack I didn’t flirt with him 😇. I was just really pleased to see his prescription for Augmentin. Antibiotic drops too. And diluted boric acid for when the meds are finished. To admin prophylactically after Lu swims.

It was interesting seeing a French doctor too – compared to the UK. You get the feeling that even if you’re dying at home, doctors will downplay it. Stop being such a hypochondriac. Dr Miguel on the other hand, took one look in Lulu’s ear, whistled softly and said, ‘Oh, what a big infection.’

I gulped. ‘A big infection? Lulu, are you being brave or is it super sore?’

Lu shrugged. ‘I don’t know. Feels pretty normal really.’

I asked Dr Miguel, ‘Can she still swim?’

He smiled at me. Totally not flirting. ‘Of course she can. As long as she keeps it dry.’

And the other patient? A lifting belt for his lower back and some locally-produced anti-arthritic cream from the well-stocked pharmacy in Les Saintes.

Oh Horatio. Ten years of boating complete. Here’s to another ten. We lit a candle in the church. Seems like a lot to pray for.

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