by J. R. Practix

dictionary with letter A

Aboard:  1. prep. on or into (a ship, aircraft, train or other vehicle) 2. adv. onto a horse: with Miguel aboard, the race was won. 3. into an organization or team: coming aboard as IBM‘s new CFO.

Considering I was twelve years old, the prospect of going on a boat trip with my best friend’s dad on a lake was nearly mind-numbing–exhilarating to the point of having every one of my pores pop forth with liquid joy. It sounded so cool.

My friend’s dad owned a cabin cruiser–one of those ships that have a place where you can go down below, open up a small refrigerator to get a snack, lounge on the bed or watch television. It was crazy.

The night before our sea voyage, I couldn’t sleep. Arriving at the dock, I danced around with my friend like a little girl discovering that a new Barbie was about to be released into the toy market.

We climbed onto the boat, pushed off from shore, and motored our way out into the middle of the lake, where engines were turned off, fishing lines dropped into the water–and we waited. And we waited.

Did I mention we waited?

What I soon discovered was that the thrill of a boat trip is in planning it, getting out  to the water and eventually coming back in. Because once you’re aboard a ship, there is nothing around you except water.

I discovered you can only go downstairs so many times before your friend’s father will complain about you emptying the fridge. I also soon realized that trying to take a nap on the bed while the boat was rocking back and forth was the best way to become seasick. We were only on our little excursion for about two hours but it seemed like one hundred and fifty-three.

I learned something that day. You must be careful about what you get aboard, because there may not be an immediate escape. And if it’s a cabin cruiser in the middle of Hoover Lake, you might find that being aboard really makes you a bored.

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