The Dinghy Broke Free And I’m Stranded!

Miami Beach
The anchorage in Miami Beach

I type this from what is essentially a small fiberglass island. I need to do some engine maintenance, so I really shouldn’t move right now, but my dinghy has broken loose and gone for a ride on it’s own. I reported it missing hours ago and still no word on it.

To make matters worse, I’m in an area with a pretty strong current, and I was below deck working all afternoon. So, it easily could have happened 2-3 hours before I even noticed. Now I understand what cruisers mean, when they say they felt helpless when their dink went MIA for whatever reason.

No Help In Site

I’ve been in touch with the Coast Guard, left 2 messages for the marine patrol, who never seem to be in the office, and been on the vhf all afternoon. There’s tons of boats anchored out here, yet only one reply. I had plans for tonight, but instead I’m sitting on a boat…alone. I was also planning on picking up more paint to finish up some projects on the boat.

That’s not happening either. In addition, I need the dinghy to do some of that engine work, and to possibly bring someone out here to help me.

The Fun Of Replacing

Downtown Miami
Looking across the bay at Downtown Miami

Worst case insurance should cover most of it, but it’s not just replacing the Guppy, it’s replacing all the other gear that was on it. Life vests, oars, the outboard, fuel can, chain, the big weatherproof padlocks, fender…even the chain for my bike was on board.

Not to mention, how exactly does a boat bum with no car go about moving a small boat from land to the anchored mother ship? Anyone have a truck? Beers on me!


The following afternoon I was able to hitch a ride to shore. The boat was sitting at the dock, right next to the police, exactly where I was joking it would be. Apparently it was safely tied there hours before I even knew it was missing.

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