We arrived at Cambridge well ahead of the hurricane, but the fleet captain was waiting for us on the dock when we moored. “The Buttercup is missing,” he informed us.
We didn't worry. We were too young to have the good sense to worry. Fortunately, this was the type of weather that our forty-three foot Crash Boat had been designed for.
Our Skipper's first inclination was to transfer the family to our boat but the seas were already to rough to get them safely aboard. Two of the older Sea Scouts leaped aboard with hand pumps. They took over and made sure the seacock was closed to prevent the boat from shipping any more water, and then began pumping it out. We rigged a towline and began the long haul back to Cambridge.
Fortunately, I was dressed in a bathing suit and the water was warm. The bow dug into each giant wave and swept over me in a giant sheet. As the bow rose on the other side, I had a dandy view like a preacher in his pulpit raised high above the water. I quickly pointed to every float I could see ahead of us and then took a giant gulp of air as the bow plunged into the next wave. It took us about an hour to clear the field of crab pots.
We arrived in Cambridge just as the eye of the hurricane passed overhead, and we were able to moor ourselves and the Buttercup without any trouble.