Thursday was a hectic day. Nicky was moping around, the car deal was still bothering him, Scott was planning the meal with Grace’s help. The boys were setting the table and there was an issue with the cake. Scott wanted to bake it, Grace wanted to buy it, Scott won.
That evening Bob arrived, in the center of the table was this cake that Scott baked and decorated. On the top, in colored icing was The Peter Charles and in the stern was a set of keys. I could tell Nicky was still not happy. We ate dinner, the boys gave Jamie their gifts, and we had to wait till he opened each one and gave the boys a hug. Adam gave him a kiss on his cheek, smiling. I had a funny feeling that this little guy was going to get us in a lot of trouble, the good kind, not the bad kind.
Then it came time to cut the cake. Jamie took the knife, he was about to cut the cake when he noticed the keys. He picked up the keys, Bob whispered to him, loud enough that we all heard, “It’s the best I could do.”
Jamie smiled, “ThanksDad, I know and I appreciate it. As long as it gets me to school and home, I’m satisfied.”
Nicky got up and I knew what he was about to do. “Nicky, no.”
He looked at me, “Nicky, don’t make his dad feel bad because of what you are about to do. His gift is what he could afford, not everyone has the money to buy a car like you have.”
Jamie took the keys, and they didn’t fit my car. Bob gave him another set, “Try these” they didn’t work as well. Before Nicky could say anything, Glen opened the garage door. There was Jamie’s green car. I looked at Nicky, he had tears in his eyes, he gave Glen a hug and whispered something to him. Glen gave him a squeeze.
Jamie, looked at the car. He ran his hands all over it. We watched, he had tears in his eyes. “Dad, how can you afford this. It’s too much.”
“I got a special deal on it,” looking at me.
“Let’s go for a ride.” Nicky was in the rider seat.
Friday, Scott had another cake for him on the boat. It was in the shape of a fish.Paul came over on Thursday as well as Rusty. It was a party of all of the boys, we carried Shawn down, he played the pipes, in the garage before we left.
Bob brought Jamie over, actually Jamie drove Bob over. Bob was going to take the car back home. Jamie will pick it up when we deliver fish. “How do you and Glen handle this. I had enough trouble handling Jamie when he was this age?”
“Actually the boys look out for each other. The older boys make sure the younger boys are taken care of, Glen and I share as much of our time as possible with them. For some reason it works.”
“Kev and I have talked about this. We think their background plays an important part. Think about it, tossed out, disowned, orphans, all of that preconditions them. Here they know they are loved, they are wanted andbest of all, they are having fun.”
I explained to Shawn that we were going fishing, but we can’t take him because he would need to be able to walk up and down stairs to get to the sleeping cabins. But as soon as the cast comes off, we’ll take him. He said he understood, but I could see the disappointment in his eyes.
“Dad, we could fix a bed for him in the galley. The seats are big enough for him to lay down. I’ll sit up with him.”
I looked at Glen, he gave David a hug. “Okay, we’ll somehow arrange for him to come with us.” I told Tom what we wanted to do. He said he would come along to help, if its was okay. David got a few boys to fix the wagon with a pillow for Shawn to sit on. First we moved Frankie in the chair, then Shawn in the wagon. Now everyone was happy.
Nicky and Charles went to the bridge, I yelled up, “Make sure you have the right chart.” Then we heard Charles, ‘Johnny, anchor, Jamie, bow line, Joseph, stern line.’ Then, ‘anchor up, bow line in, stern line in.’ Nicky or Charles, not sure who started the motor as we moved out of the dock into the open sea.
Shawn was excited, he could see out of the galley windows. There was a big smile on his face. The boys read or played games, including Shawn in the games. Monopoly was the chosen game, Tom was the banker. I fixed coffee for Glen and I, Tom asked for some as well. The boys wanted a beer, so I said okay. Tom looked at me, “We are beyond the US border and in international waters. If they want a beer it is okay with me.” The boys brought up a beer for everyone.
When Tom saw the beer he laughed, “You had me”
The boys kept playing till we heard, “Anchor Aweigh.”
We had arrive at our site. “Okay boys, let’s get the nets down.” Jaime and Sammy took the bow nets, Johnathan and Joseph took the stern nets.“Dad, we need bait.” I gave them some crab shells. Fish are better bait but till we bring in the fishing nets, crab would have to do. From the gallery window you can see the nets being lowered, but not all the way.
Scott and Steve started dinner. It was a grueling task as we had spaghetti from the pizza parlor. They did make hot chocolate, the spaghetti they warmed up in the oven. They even bought the salad.
I watched Shawn, he had a big smile. The boys all chatted, they talked about the books they were reading, Shawn expressed an interest in them, Joseph went down to the cabins and brought up a box of books. “Shawn, look through these. If you have any questions about a book, ask I’m sure one of us have read it.”
Dinner over, cake and ice cream for Jamie’s birthday was dessert.Nicky told me later that Jamie enjoyed the birthday cake on the boat more than at home.Fishing was good. The boys filled the chests with fish, providing Charles with plenty of bait.
Saturday night, “I think we’ll go in early tomorrow. The holds are getting full, I’d estimate two more hauls and we’ll be full. Let’s check the stern holds, I usually don’t pay much attention to them.” The shrimp hold was half full, the lobster hold was three-fourth full. “I’d expected the shrimp hold to be close to full.” Glen went and open the chests we bought for Charles.
He started to laugh. “Look at this, it’ll answer your questions.” One chest was almost full.
“Check the other chest.” It had some lobsters in it but it wasn’t quite the same level as the shrimp.
I was right, we pulled the nets at four and at twelve. We were full, Nicky started themotor, Joseph went and brought the anchor on board. We headed for home.
About an hour out, Nicky blew the horn three times. By the time we docked, cannery people were there. Uncle was set up, Charles was checking weights, Glen and Nicky went to get the truck and car. Andy went to the Wharf for the pans for shrimp and lobster. I didn’t give all of the lobster to them, I wanted some for us. Shrimp wasn’t a problem, we had plenty. Joseph had shrimp and lobster for the cannery men who helped to unload. I thought, Charles has been training these boys and doing a good job. They now can handle the stern by themselves which means Charles will be spending more time on the bridge.
We placed Frankie and Shawn in the car, as we loaded the trunk with the small chests. The large chests went on the truck. The large chests on the stern will stay there, they were empty. Arriving home, the boys showered, except Frankie and Shawn. They had a wash down, but they weren’t handling the fish so they weren’t as bad as the other boys.
Going around delivering fish, was fun for the boys. Shawn wasn’t going to stay home now that he could ride in the car. At Grams, Glen gave her the ticket and itinerary for her visit East. Charles got his kiss and a complement from Shawn, “nice bird.”
At Mom and Dad’s, we carried Shawn to the back yard and sat him at a table. Mom came and asked questions, as usual, Shawn got a grandma and granddad from that meeting.
We delivered the other fish, Rusty’s mom came out and said she wanted to know why her daughter can’t go. I told her we don’t have accommodations for females. I looked at Jamie, he just nodded his head. “Why don’t you have accommodations?”
“There are only seven cabins and those are occupied by all of the boys. If she wants to sleep with the boys, I could take her but cannot guarantee her virginity when she returns.” I thought Glen and Jamie were going to get sick from laughing.
“Well, if she can’t go then Rusty can’t go.”
Now that was unfair. “What does his dad say?”
“It doesn’t matter what his dad says, I’m telling you no sister, no Rusty.”
“Glen, Kevin, can you adopt me?”
“Sure, all we have to show is that you are being mentally tortured. And from what I have just heard, that’s a possibility. I’ll have my lawyer contact you.”
His mother’s jaw dropped. She grabbed him by the arm and pulled him into the house.“Glen, make note of this brutality. I’m sure he’ll have bruises on his arm. I’ll call Child Services and have them investigate.”
Jamie’s girl friend came out. “Jamie, you must take me or we’re through.”
“Good, I was going to break up with you anyway. You are one selfish pig, good riddance.” I was surprised and looking at Glen he was surprised as well. But Nicky wasn’t, so I assumed they have been talking about it.
I talked to Grace, she said she would stop in, in an unofficial capacity and see what happens. It was on Tuesday that Jamie told me Rusty is allowed to go fishing. I knew that Grace’s visit probably stirred up a hornet nest which resulted in Rusty going fishing.
I had gone back to work on Monday, my holiday was over.Wednesday I met with John Adams and outlined my plan for the small houses. He said he would pull together an overall layout of the land and get back to me. I had the land reclassified as residential.
I called Stewart about moving on the adoption of Shawn, Steve and Frankie. He said he would call Grace and work with her on it. Now I could relax till fishing on Friday.
Thursday night my outside fishing crew showed up, Paul and Rusty. Nicky drove Gram to the airport and was now back. Scott and Steve went shopping for the weekend, I know they arranged for the spaghetti and chicken.
Friday morning , the boys said they were going crabbing. Glen and I took off for work. Lunch time I was surprised to see Terry. We sat at his table. “How are you doing?”
“I’m doing fine. Mr. Donaldson was happy with my work.”
“Good because next summer I’m taking off the whole summer and you can fill in.” He smiled as he looked at Amy.
“I’m enrolling at the University on Monday.”
“Excellent, Glen’s brother and a friend are also enrolling on Monday. I’m glad for you Amy, I know your mother is glad.”
She smiled as she took our order. “You’re one lucky guy Terry. If you are free over
any of the school breaks let me know if you want to work. I’ll talk to Donaldson.” I was thinking of myself more than Terry. To have the time off was right up my alley.
We continued to fish through September. The kids started school, we had to have placement tests for grade assignment. I kept Sammy home until he was able to catch up to his age group. I set him up on a computer based educational program for which he was very happy. Travis did stay and started school with Scott. The boys were taking driving lessons and doing well, so I’m told. Shawn and Frankie were healed and Shawn provided us with entertainment. I put The Peter Charles in dry dock, Tony had the list of modifications.
John Adam started to layout the land for the small houses. On the first week-end when we didn’t go fishing, we took a walk around the property. I knew there was a stream that flowed through the western boarder of the property. Peter found it fascinating, “Dad, will crabs live in this?”
“I don’t know, the water is cold, put your hand in it.”
“It’s very cold. Could we drink it?”
“I’d have to have it tested first. It’s from a spring further up the hill.”
We continued our walk, “Dad, are those apple trees?”
“Yes, I use to collect them for my mother, she’d make apple pies with them.” I could see the gears turning in Scotts head.I picked a few apples from the tree. Wiped them on my shirt and gave them to the kids.
“These are good Dad.”
“Yes, and they are very good in apple pie.” I sowed the seed and I’ll bet in one week we’ll have apple pie. A few of the boys thought that some of the trees would be good for a tree fort. I think all boys like the idea of a tree fort, why I don’t know.We walked until we were back home. The boys now had an idea of theproperty and they knew that Glen and I would allow them to explore.
Thanksgiving, we ended up with three turkeys. Mom made one, Scott made one and Grace made one. Paul and Ellen (Paul’s parents) brought pies, Gram made sweet potatoes, the boys pitched in and we decorate the Wharf. Barney and Mary left on Wednesday to visit his brother. They would return on Sunday night.
No matter what the conditions are, as make shift as ours were, the food and company overrules all of the makeshift arrangements.When dinner was over, the men sat around reminiscing while food that wasn’t eaten was taken to the kitchen. Food packages would be made to be taken home. The boys went to check on the crabs.
I was glad I didn’t have to go to work till Monday.