First, Dad bought a book showing boat-building blueprints. The lumber company suggested using marine plywood, and mahogany wood. During the next four years there were complications when necessary tools and materials were not on hand, requiring many trips to neighborhood hardware stores. Neighbors and friends stopped by often to give advice and take pictures! Finally, the sailboat was painted and ready for its first voyage. Dad and Billy moved the boat onto a trailer and hooked it to the hitch of our Ford Fairlane. Cautiously, we drove to White Bear Lake. I prayed the boat would float. My prayers were answered when it slid slowly off the trailer into the blue waves...and it floated! Dad hoisted the sails and the wind moved us toward the middle of the lake. Suddenly, dark clouds appeared, and a strong wind caught the sails. Dad turned back towards the shore and to our car for the trip home.
In remembrance of our family building a sailboat, Dad painted 20 full-page watercolors highlighting the stages of boat construction. Now, years later, the red sailboat sails in San Francisco Bay. Grown-up Bill now lives in San Francisco and enjoys sailing on the Bay with his friends and especially with his visiting Minnesota relatives.