Sunday, December 12, 2010
She's Run Aground Captain!... abandon ship!!! no wait...
Gather 'round children and let ol' Captain Kevin tell the tale of that fateful night at the helm of the Showboat Branson Belle. "I remember it like it was yesterday (in fact, it was yesterday)... the lake, she was angry that afternoon when we hoisted anchor and set off on the dinner cruise. We were well on our way as the sun was setting, and a bitter, cold, north wind blew hard against her hull. The happy passengers, dressed in their holiday cheer, were unaware of the tragedy that was unfolding before them. Then, without warning, a great shudder raked across the Belle like a shiver from the icy hand of the Reaper Himself. The great Showboat, with some 600 souls aboard, had lost power to the main thrusters, and against howling winds, she began to drift dangerously toward the rocky coatline of Tablerock Lake. Anxious minutes passed with my nose pressed against the cold glass of the Pilot Room; my eyes straining against the encroaching darkness. The black coastline was looming close. White waves crashed again the mightly craft as she learched to a halt with a groan. She's run aground Captain!!! All hands on deck!! May day! Mayday I bellowed into the radio. A reassuring reply crackled across the speaker... "Copy that Showboat... where is your location?" God only knows.... God only knows".
Captain Kevin drew a heavy breath and stared into the distance. It was going to be a long night.