Old geezer sailing on the Sakonnet river in small sailboat.
Old geezer (who is wearing a life jacket) clinging to his upturned hull.
This probably sounds like a familiar scenario to regular readers of this blog. Been there, done that. But wait, there's a happy ending...
Fire departments from Portsmouth and Tiverton launch their rescue boats in atrocious weather conditions to rescue the old geezer.
That was the essence of the story reported by several local newspapers and websites, such as this story at projo.com and this one at eastbayri.com.
But it wasn't me. Not this time. The incident happened on Thursday evening during one of the most violent thunderstorms we have ever seen around here. I wasn't out sailing that day. I do check the weather forecasts and radar maps before I go sailing. I suppose I should add that to some of my regular articles about safety precautions for boating.
It's good to know that our local firefighters are trained in water rescues and are willing to go out in the worst of weathers to rescue some old geezer who gets himself in trouble on our local bays and rivers. The risks that our firefighters face are very real. Three years ago a Tiverton firefighter, Gerald Leduc, lost his life during an attempted rescue on a local pond. I hope everyone remembers that the next time some union-hating politician is spouting off about cutting pay or benefits or pensions or staffing for your local fire department.