So it was bound to happen….I just thought I would see it coming. You hear of arguments among anchorages…people mad about this and that…neighbors not being very neighborly. Andy and I are the epitomy of friendly. We talk to everyone. We’re not intrusive (truth be known, we prefer our privacy). But we’re friendly enough to not be considered aloof. So imagine our surprise tonight when we were sitting in the cabin, about 9:30, watching Top Chef Deserts for about the third time, and we got a loud knock on our hull. We paused our show, went outside only to meet a guy on a boat next to us very upset. We have spoken to him before…friendly conversations I thought. He informed us we were “disturbing the peace” with our generator. We were too loud and he was tired of it. His tone was angry, argumentative and he definitely had his cackles up. Andy, normally the calm one among us, immediately went primitive and gave him his two cents. Curse words were exchanged and to everyone’s shock, I intervened with calm words. I know, you might have to read that again. Andy was upset, Monica was calm.
The problem was, this man is insane. He not only called us names, he told us we needed to go back to America where we would be happy and he said if he was in America, he would call the police on us (I would call the police on his ugly boat too….if I hadn’t seen him get on and off, I would swear it was abandoned). He said all this with a very Midwestern accent, mind you. I’ll skip the details (which are the best part) and say that I finally told him to just leave. The whole point we were trying to make was that a little friendly “hey, your generator is pretty loud” would have done just fine.
In the end, Andy went back to the guy’s boat (after a bit of calming down) and smoothed things over. In reality, I hate that he had to do that. But we’re leaving our boat in three days and sometimes the people you need to fear the most are your own kind. This man lives on little more than a raft and is obviously a purest. We, on the other hand are not. In fact, he probably hates the fact that we have all the creature comforts and we’re still living the dream. So, clearing the air and making sure he’s not going to do something stupid while we’re gone is worthwhile.
But before I close, I have to make a few points….
We spent lots of money to make sure we have the quietest generator on the block. Honda 2000…it’s worth its weight in gold. In two years, no one has ever peeped a word to us about our noise level.
Andy and I are normal people. I don’t mean this in a cruiser way. I mean this in an every day sort of way. When we go home, we’ll blend right back in. We’re not out to become ex-pats and make statements against our country. We don’t think everyone that eats McDonald’s is going to die of heart attacks. And we don’t think if you use a plastic bag to bring your groceries home that you’re contributing to the demise of our people. We’re just normal people doing and abnormal thing.
Lastly, we’re nice people. I can only think of one or two times in my life where ANYONE has ever talked to me like that before. It hits me in my core. It hurts my feelings to attack our way of life like that. You may think I’m being dramatic, but this guy didn’t just come after our generator, he came after us. It’s absolutely insane and I find myself unable to get over it.
It’s not a good way to leave your boat for a long period of time. I have to believe that we have enough people looking after us that we’ll be fine. But you can bet your ass as soon as Jake and I get back, I’m firing up that thing and having a total movie marathon. There comes a time when you just have to get over yourself. The pigs squealing here are mind boggling. I’m woken up every morning by those darn roosters and any given night between Thursday and Monday you can hear some ear splitting Karaoke coming from the villages on either side of the bay. We are not he problem here.
So, my message to you, my fellow boaters… It’s ok if you have a problem with your neighbor…just don’t forget that you’re still human beings. One of the shockers of being out here is all the assholes we’ve met disguised as friendly cruisers. Because we are a unique group of people who have been blessed with the ability to follow our dreams, many of us feel that as soon as we leave the boundries of our blessed country, we have the right to lose our manners as well. I challenge that. It’s more important now than ever.