I was standing with my son, Travis at the front of my cottage which was located in a suburban area of Germany, admiring the pontoon boat I inherited from my dad. Staring at the boat brought back vivid memories of the condition of the boat when it was willed to him by my dad who was a major in the US Army.
My dad who was retired purchased the boat in Malaysia in the year 1984 from a General Dalton who was also a friend to him in the Army, Dalton who owns the boat had bought it in the year 1956, but he decided to sell it because he wanted to relocate to India. When my dad bought it from him, he was very glad that he used it every weekend.
Then one day, he used the boat to support the bridge in the front of his farmhouse and then there was a great storm. He couldn’t enter the storm to drive the boat out of the mud. He told me how sad he knew that the boat would sink. He looked around and discovered that no one was around to help. He had no other choice than to leave it.
Years later, dad died and left all his property to Travis, my son. He willed everything to Travis except the pontoon boat which was willed to me when the will was read to Jack. I had no interest in owning a boat, so I decided to sell it off because I believed that the boat was already damaged and could never be repaired
Two weeks after dad’s death, my son and I were walking across the bridge, and we passed by the boat. Immediately we passed by it, and I discovered that my son was not happy, but I decided to ignore him. Later in the day, however, I discovered that Travis was still withdrawn and he would not talk to anyone. I called him and asked what the problem was.
Travis told me that he wanted me to repair the boat because he had had a dream where he owned the boat.
I wondered what a twelve-year-old boy wanted to do with a boat. I had been the one taking care of him since my wife Molly died. All I wanted was for Travis to be happy and I would do anything to make him happy.
Looking at him brought back memories of Molly. She had been a renowned model who was recognized to be the most beautiful lady in the States. Molly Macbeth, the only child of her parents, lived in California State in the United States of America before we got married. I had met her in a studio in California when I went to see a friend who also happened to be her boss and producer.
When I was about to go out of the studio, we ran into each other and Molly dropped her bag due to the shock. Her face looked pale, but I quickly came back to my senses and picked the bag up for her. We apologized to each other, and we exchanged our numbers. The following week, we went to dinner together, and many dates followed. After three months, we tied the nuptial knot in a Church in California, and we moved over to Germany to continue our lives as a family.
Two years later, Molly gave birth to Travis their first son in France. I was glad on receiving the news about the safe delivery. Six months after, Molly continued her profession as a model. Two years after Travis birth, she became pregnant again, but this time around, Molly died during childbirth. I loved Molly so much, and I promised never to make Travis, ‘who was a replica of his mother, Molly, suffer for anything.
It has now been three years ago since Molly’s death, and I have always been there for his son, but today I was more confused than every other person on earth because I didn’t want the boat as it was old and very dirty, but I just had to please Travis and make him happy. Suddenly his voice jolted me out of my thoughts.
“Dad will you take the boat and clean it?” he asked.
“Yes, ” I answered.
“Will it be ours?”, asked Travis again
“Yes it will be ours, I mean yours,” I told him. Travis’ face brightened, and this encouraged me.
That evening, Travis and I went to a nearby supermarket and bought a pressure washer, brush, sponge, latex glove, and a bucket. The next day, we carried all the tools together with some warm water to the farmhouse. I also bought some other things like twenty gals of gas, and two gallons concentrate of deodorizer, carpet shampoo, aluminum cleaner, polish, a new battery, and a new water pump.
After everything was complete, we set to work with both of us wearing our latex gloves. On opening the boat, Travis couldn’t stand the smell of the pontoon.
“Oh it smells,” he said.
Even I could not hold the smell, and I spat several times and muttered a curse, but I just had to do this as I had promised. We started the cleaning of the boat with the use of the pressure washer and aluminum cleaner. While I was spraying the pressure washer and aluminum cleaner, Travis was also washing the carpets with the carpet shampoo which had been mixed with a bucket of water, and brush.
After an hour, I rinsed the aluminum part of the boat which had been sprayed earlier with warm water. I then washed the part of the fabric with shampoo and a soft sponge. Afterward, I polished the fabric and refilled the pressure washer with the gals of gas and concentrate of deodorizer and sprayed it on the boat. I then moved to the engine part of the boat and rebuilt the carbs, put a new pump and a new battery. We entered the boat, and I hit the key, and it came alive.
“Hurrah” Travis shouted. I was very happy myself about our achievement. At least Travis is happy now, and he is happier.
Now, Travis and I stared at the beautiful pontoon boat which we now use every weekend. I glanced at Travis and saw him starring at the pontoon boat, which has now been named Molly, smiling. I knew that Molly would be smiling down on us affectionately.