Monday, July 4, 2011

The Wrong Propeller

by Peter Waldin

   My first vessel, that I used for chartering, Puffin III was a Scottish built ketch.  I had occasion to re-engine it from the original Kelvin to a Perkins diesel.  We sailed as far as Westview, (near Powell River), and realized that something was amiss with the propulsion unit.  I was advised to continue on to a little harbour further north, Lund, which was noted for its hotel and Ole the owner of the ways and the machine shop.  Ole, in short order, solved the mystery of my boat's strange performance.
    Nothing was wrong with the new engine or the transmission.  The previous marine mechanic had installed a left-handed prop for a right-handed one.  We were, in a manner of speaking, going "backwards forward."
    Many of us are like Puffin III .  On the surface things appear okay.  If the truth were told, appearances belie the facts.  They give a false impression.  We say of some people, "they have lots of money,"  We should be saying, that the money has them.  Dr. Johnson, the famous English writer of yesteryear, once visited Garrick, the great actor.  Looking at his magnificently appointed dwellings, Johnson said, "Ah Davy, Davy!  How hard it must be for you to die!"
    In trying to possess the earth, a man may lose his freedom.  And when you contemplate all the goods that money can buy, let us be sure we haven't lost the things that money cannot buy.

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