It was Albert’s old boat, the boys knew that, pulled onto the salt marsh, away from the tide. The boys also knew Albert was in hospital and word was he wouldn’t be coming home. That boat was idle, left ready with mast and sail,
“Come on,” George said, “give us a hand. Heave-ho.”
Michael looked aghast. “What’d you doing?”
“I’m taking her out for a sail, of course.”
“But… the currents, the tide. It’s a creek but it’s still part of the sea.”
“Scaredy-cat,” George cheeked him.
“We’re not…” he held out his arms. They weren’t experienced sailors. They’d never been out on their own.
“Come on, we can play Swallows and Amazons… get to that island… it’s not so far.”
It was the coastguard spotted them, the alert raised by Michael’s mother when he didn’t come home for lunch. The lifeboat was launched. They reckoned by then they were halfway to Holland.