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18 April 2016

O Is For Old Salt | Nancy Drew Investigates {A To Z Challenge}


During April, we're participating in the Blogging from A to Z Challenge. Every day (except Sundays), we'll be doing an alphabet themed post starting with "A is for Anchor" and ending with "Z is for Zodiac." Each post is an installment of "Nancy Drew Investigates the Case of the Missing Anchor" - so you may want to read the posts from the beginning, in order to follow along with the story (click here for the first post and here for an index of all the posts). At the end of each post, you'll also find some random thoughts on the day's particular topic. So, if Nancy isn't your thing, feel free to skip the story and go straight to the end.    

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When we last left you, Don and Judy told the girls about sailing to the Bahamas and Nancy filled Shelley and Marvin in on the conversation between Captain Gus and the man from Party Time.

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As the girls made their way to the dinghy dock, George felt something brush against her leg. She looked down and saw a tiny tortoiseshell kitten with a crooked tail staring up at her curiously. George reached down to scoop up the kitten, but she jumped away quickly doing a sort of somersault in the process. “Isn’t she adorable? I wonder what her name is.”

“I know,” said Nancy with a smile. “Let’s call her Little Georgie because she does judo moves just like you.”
“I wish we could take her home with us. I wonder who she belongs to,” said George as she looked around the dock.

As they were watching the frisky kitten’s antics, an older man, with a full white beard, pipe and a captain’s hat came up to them. He looked like a real old salt. All that was missing was an eye patch and a peg leg. “What are you doing with my cat?” he asked with a gruff voice.

“Is she your cat?” asked Nancy. “She’s cute as a button. What’s her name?

“I call her Blackbeard, on account of the black markings around her mouth. She has to earn her keep though and keep mice off of my boat.”

“Oh, which boat is yours?”

“It’s called Xebec. I run Xebec Charters out of Pine Tree Bay. Maybe you’ve heard of it. We do fishing charters during the summer.”

“You must be Captain Gus,” said Nancy with a smile. “I’ve heard all about you. Actually, we were thinking of organizing a charter trip for our boyfriends when they’re on summer break from Emerson College. Some friends of ours have chartered with you before as well and said they had a great time. They also mentioned a young man who works for you - I think his name is Pete.”

“Pete’s my nephew. He helps out occasionally, but right now he’s busy with other things.”

“Yes, now I remember. They said that Pete sells used marine equipment.” Nancy said innocently. “I bet he’s doing a good business. Did you hear about all the stuff that got stolen from the marina in Pine Tree Bay a few days ago? Lots of folks are going to need to replace their stolen items. Do you know if Pete is here at the regatta? Maybe I could introduce him to a few folks.”

Captain Gus looked at Nancy suspiciously and said gruffly, “I don’t know where Pete is. Whatever he gets up to isn’t my business and it shouldn’t be your business either.” He bent down, scooped up Blackbeard and headed off to his dinghy in a rush.

“Did you see how nervous he looked when you were asking him about Pete?” asked George. “I think we’re on to something!”

Tune in on Tuesday for the next installment of Nancy Drew Investigates – P is for Plane.

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Little Georgie on the left and Big Georgie, the Adventure Cat, on the right. Although, Little Georgie isn't all that little anymore, but my sister hasn't sent me any recent photos. What kind of auntie is that?

My sister wanted C to be for cat (our whole family is full of crazy cat ladies) but I already had catamaran lined up. To make it up to her, I featured her cat, Georgie, in a cameo role in today's installment. I was visiting her in Portland when she adopted little Georgie, with her adorable crooked tail.

I have another Georgie in my life, Georgie the Adventure Cat, who lives with her two humans on a sailboat. When her humans go away, she stays with me on my boat. When her humans come back, I pretend that I don't know them so that I don't have to give Georgie back.

{You can probably tell by now that we don't have a boat cat and we're not going to be getting one anytime soon. I live vicariously through other people's cats.}

Of course, this doesn't have anything to do with today's word - old salt. But, in a way it does. I always imagine those crusty old sailors, who scowl and speak gruffly to everyone, have a soft spot when it comes to kittens. After all, who wouldn't? Can't you just picture Captain Gus cuddling up with Blackbeard and scratching her belly when he thinks no one is watching?

Do you have any pets or wish you did? If so, what kind?

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44 comments:

  1. So some people have cats that live on their boats full time? Or are they just cats that go with them when they're out on the water? We have a dog, but she isn't too fond of boats!

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    1. They do! Georgie the Adventure cat has lived on a boat with her humans since she was a kitten and even crossed the Atlantic twice. Lots of folks also have boat dogs as well :-)

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  2. I am also a crazy cat lady, I have 2 at the moment, Binx and Silver (they came with the names since they were from a rescue centre). They are absolute darlings, except when they decide to come in in the middle of the night with wet feet and walk all over my head! ;P
    Sophie
    Sophie's Thoughts & Fumbles | Wittegen Press | FB3X

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    1. Cats always seem to know the "best" time to walk all over you. It's usually when you're sound asleep :-)

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  3. I really miss having our cat aboard! But I have to admit, the logistics are easier without her. I'm investigating fostering next time we're planning to stay put for a while. There are several organizations that help find temporary homes for pets of military folks on deployment.

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    1. I don't know if I could foster animals. I would be way too tempted to keep them forever. But, that would be a really nice thing to do for military folks.

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  4. Cute cats. Does the one stay with you because it's too dangerous to take her along?
    Hellboy has cats, so it's true everyone has a soft spot.

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    1. She's dangerous, but more to lizards and bugs :-) She goes sailing with them, it's all she's ever known. She only stays with me when her humans fly someplace or go away for few days to someplace where cats aren't allowed.

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  5. We used to have two dogs who traveled with us in our camper and catamaran. As a matter of fact, it was because of them that we chose those two travel modes. Unfortunately, they both passed away. We still miss them, but, just like you, enjoy pet sitting to get our fill of furry love these days! ;-)

    Liesbet @ Roaming About – A Life Less Ordinary

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    1. You actually have a sweet deal doing pet sitting gigs, although I imagine I would get really attached watching them for as long as you do.

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  6. Growing up, I was absolutely crazy about cats and always had one for a pet, and then I met Sally so now I'm a dog person. I'd love to have another one (they're so much easier . . . and cleaner) but, as it turns out, I'm allergic.

    Cheers, Stephanie
    http://www.svcambria.com/2016/04/o-is-for-overnight-on-hook-what-we-look.html

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    1. I'm actually allergic to cats, but I suffer through it because I love them so much. I am truly a crazy cat lady.

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  7. I know quite a few people around here who have boat cats. We are a seaport and some people live on their boats. In fact I have one friend who has two little dogs on her boat and they seem to love it.

    @Kathleen01930
    Meet My Imaginary Friends
    #AtoZchallenge

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    1. Boat cats, besides being adorable, are also great for keeping rodents, lizards and bugs at bay. A lot of folks I know have boat dogs too and they love being on the water and playing in the water.

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  8. Loving the story. Very much.

    We had Little Bit our baby dog for almost 13 years. We lost her last October. I wish we still had her.

    Have a fabulous day. ☺

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    1. I've seen pictures of Little Bit on your blog and she was a real gorgeous dog. You lost a wonderful member of your family - that's a really hard thing to go through.

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  9. I have cats and dogs. Very happy with them. They give me so much joy. :-D

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    1. Nice! We used to have two cats and a dog. It was fun to see our big dog (Lab mix) cower in front of our tiny cats. All they had to do was raise a paw with their claws showing and the dog would get out of their way. Then, the next minute, they would be rubbing against our dog's legs and marking her to show that she's part of the pack.

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  10. I would dearly love to have a cat on board, but like Stephanie, I'm allergic to them. Very much so. Turns out, I'm probably allergic to our dog, too, but he's not going on board. Like you, I live vicariously through other people's cats. Maybe someone will develop a hypoallergenic cat that still looks and acts like a real cat. I'm not sure that old salt in the story is going to pay enough attention to that kitty and he's probably not feeding it. George needs to rescue the kitty from him.

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    1. Don't let allergies stop you :-) Have you seen those cats without any fur. They're supposed to be good for folks with allergies, although I think it kind of misses the point. Cats are supposed to have soft fur for petting.

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  11. Nancy is bold as brass with her questioning! I hope she makes it to the end unscathed :-) I used to be a cat person, but now I'm a dog person and think cats have too much of a hoity-toity attitude! - Lucy

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    1. Nancy doesn't back down from any situation. I'm surprised she lets George do all the judo moves. I would have thought she would have been the one fighting off the bad guys.

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  12. I have a black kitten named Midnight who is as bold as brass ... until a strange sound comes from outside. :-)

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    1. That's funny - I can just picture that! We used to have a black cat named Blackberry Jam. We called her Jam for short.

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  13. Yes, of course we have cats onboard! We couldn't leave them behind.....
    https://svdenalirosenc43.blogspot.com/2015/08/land-cats-converting-to-boat-cats.html

    and, "A day in the life of a feline crew-member"
    https://svdenalirosenc43.blogspot.com/2015/09/a-day-in-life.html

    I'm anxiously awaiting the next installment of the mystery! I can't believe that half the month is already gone, and I can't guess what is going to happen next.

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    1. Your cats are so cute! Although, I'm not sure they would want to be called auxiliary crew. Don't all cats thing they're in charge and are the Captain by default? Growing up, I used to have a cat that looked like Elise.

      All you crazy cat ladies (and gents) - check out these two blog posts. They've got awesome pictures of a boat cat's daily life.

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    2. Gus doesn't mind the "crew" moniker, but Elsie....she thinks she is the CEO of the Denali Rose Cruise Lines.

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    3. And the Denali Rose Cruise Line exists solely to transport her around, feed her and tend to her other needs. Sounds like Elsie has it all figured out :-)

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  14. Had two dogs. Lost the first in 2011. The second passed last October. It's hard to imagine another animal in their place, but I'm almost ready for another. It takes time.

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    1. Oh, I'm so sorry to hear that. It's so hard to lose one's furry members of the family. When the time is right, you'll know.

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  15. Just imagining a crusty old pirate cuddling with a kitten made me smile. :)
    I had a Boston terrier, Patches, she was my baby. My no pets hubby fell for her too. He cried as hard as I did when she left us. We still miss her deeply.

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    1. I love that your no pets hubby fell for Patches! She must have been a very special part of your life. Having lost my own pets, I know how hard it is and how much you must miss her.

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  16. Interestingly, Captain Gus hosted an after-school TV cartoon show when I was a kid. Hard for me not to conjure up his image when I read about him here, and with his red wig and mustache, it's a strange image indeed!

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    1. Too funny! This has totally changed the image I have of Captain Gus in my head. Maybe Capt Gus used to have red hair and a mustache when he was younger, before he turned to pirating ways.

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  17. Cute cats! We used to have cats, but didn't replace the last one. We cat sit for friends occasionally and are regularly ambushed by Misty, a neighbour's cat, so get a reasonable share of cat love.
    The Glasgow Gallivanter

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    1. A friendly neighbor cat is a great solution!

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  18. My dogs are my family. In fact, I think we can all learn more about unconditional love from our pets; we humans struggle in this area.

    I would love cats too, except I'm highly allergic. I wouldn't mind the sneezing, but the asthma makes it impossible to be around them :(

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    1. I definitely agree with you about pets teaching us about unconditional love!

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  19. Ah, the story keeps twisting in unexpected directions. Nancy is indefatigable! And the cats? Of course. My pets are virtual these days. Still miss Tiger-cat who passed on to kitty-heaven some years back. She used to jump on my student essays when she thought I worked too many hours.

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    1. Indefatigable - love that word and think it describes Nancy to a T!

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  20. He can't be all bad if he has a cat, surely? We have two kitties - Amber and Ruby. They're cousins. They are Savannahs so they are big cats and Amber is a bit squittish, but she is getting better and better with people all the time. They both come and demand loves from me all the time while I'm trying to work :)
    Tasha
    Tasha's Thinkings | Wittegen Press | FB3X (AC)

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    1. Yes, there could be hope for Captain Gus. Deep down, he's probably a good guy, but took a wrong turn somewhere in life :-)

      I don't know what Savannahs are - off to ask Mr. Wikipedia about that!

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  21. I love cats but am highly allergic to them. My dog allergies are not as bad. Haven't had a dog for the last 20 years, but I dog-sit my grand-dog when my kids go away.

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