We had 2-3 knots of current rushing past Tahina due to tides. I was holding the dinghy so it was under Tahina’s transom (which makes it easy to get on and put stuff on the dinghy safely). Karen had her feet over the transom and was putting things down into the dinghy. The water proof bag rolls up and then two clasps attach making a convenient handle (as shown above). Karen picked it up by the clasps. Just as she was putting it on the dinghy the handle came undone and fell out of her hand. She squealed “It’s open!” and the bag hit the side of the rubber dinghy and bounced, then fell in the water.
I had no time to think what she meant about it being open. Because, at that moment I looked up to see her reaching over the side, and the boat moved. I slipped and fell in the water – wrenching my shoulder muscles when I tried to avoid falling in. I realized the bag had gone in, but I thought it was fine since its water proof. And, I was worrying about my shoulder. Karen frantically tried to grab an oar to get the bag, but the fast current made the bag drift away.
I got back on the boat, and we untied and chased down the bag with the dinghy. I grabbed it, and at that point realized the bag was open. That’s what she meant! Oh sh*t! (I actually used more words than that – I am a sailor after all.) Inside was my DSLR camera, with telephoto lens, my smartphone, and the 3G device we had bought for Internet access. All of it was wet – too wet. We quickly grabbed each piece and dried with a towel. Then got back on the boat and opened up the devices and took out batteries. All of them were wet. The camera was definitely a goner with over an ounce of water inside the body and lens. We put phone devices in a box of rice (to draw out the moisture), but there is little hope of recovery. I had some hope the phone would be ok because it was the least wet, but after a day it wouldn’t power on.
This is only the second time we have ever dropped a bag in the water. The last time was almost two years ago when we lost a laptop which got just a few drops of water on it. When you consider we take things hundreds of times a year onto the water, I guess our statistics aren’t too bad. But, the fact we were taking all the proper precautions, and still happened to have an accident in the one instant when something bad could happen, was really aggravating!
We have since gone to a town (that’s the reason why we went to Maryborough) to buy a new Internet device. It will take more time to replace the other equipment. About the only good news is that it was time to upgrade my smartphone, the telephoto lens was starting to have problems (and I wanted to upgrade it anyway), and the camera body was already 2.5 years old (essentially out of date).
Oh and another water related incident happened the day before. Our watermaker has gone kaput. It appears to be the main water pump. This has been an expensive week to say the least.
C’est la vie. These kind of things go with boating.