It’s a line we often use in our advertising. “Boats you remember. Since 1917.” Of course, 1917 refers to the establishment of our now 90-year-old shop. Dories date back even further than that. And the phrase ‘boats you remember,’ well, that just seems to be our experience as we meet folks here at the shop in Lunenburg or via phone and Internet contacts. People seem to have a special spot in their hearts for these craft, and they often share vivid memories of dories from their past. The client for whom we’re building the Fortune Bay dory is no exception.
He writes, “My first memory of a dory was with my father, launching Banks dories from the north shore of PEI. My father was a very big, strong and handsome man, always lots of fun and I remember being perched on the back slope of the dory stern and feeling somewhat afraid of the idea of being on the open ocean as most 8 year olds would.
“I also remember how quickly I was able, with out any real counsel, to feel unafraid of the boat and become very at ease at its movement and the sound of the rhythm of the oars.”So began a lifelong love and understanding of dories.
As a young adult, he rowed competitively. But he most enjoys long distance motoring. “The new four stroke 9.9 motors are now so reliable, fuel efficient and quiet, (they’re) the modern equivalent of the old make and break engine. Always get there and always feel safe. The advancement of GPS makes things a lot easier also,” he says.
This is the gentleman’s third dory in 30 years, all from our shop. “And I am so pleased that I can have another built, happy the building craft is not lost and my boat is built with some TLC,” he says.
(By the way, his last dory is now 27 years old and needs just “a very modest refit and it’s good to go again next year.”)
Ironically, this fellow came to Lunenburg on October 1 to commission his boat and only then realized it was precisely 40 years to the day his father – the man who introduced him to dories – was lost at sea while captain of the dragger Gloucester 11.
“I felt good about that whatever it means,” he says. “Perhaps it’s that I am the son of a son of a sailor and my son is also a sailor. Is there a DNA link to the sea? I think there is!”Dory PlugThe Dory ShopLunenburg, Nova Scotia, Canadainfo@doryshop.com