I have a great job. Most days I'm very happy to be at work and would work far more hours in a week than is healthy if not for an even greater love and enjoyment of my family. I manage the boat shop for the Wooden Boat Foundation, www.woodenboat.org/ a non-profit organization that some of you may be familiar with in Port Townsend, WA. In our shop throughout the year you can find anything from 80' spars from a local schooner, to a class building a micro cruising sailboat called SCAMP, 7th graders learning how to chop dovetails and everything in between. The highlight of 2013 was the two weeks spent building a Don Hill Mini Drifter, www.dhdriftboats.com/driftBoatPlans.html with a group of young men and women called the Young Marines, www.youngmarines.com/. These hardworking and respectful young men and women came from all over the country to jump into the maritime world here in Port Townsend, learning celestial navigation, sailing and rowing as well as building the boat. The first week started off slowly as they learned how to work with wood, sawing to a line, drilling and driving screws and ring shank nails, what I meant by a fair curve and how to keep sikaflex out of your hair. Once we got past the basics I found them to be capable, willing and eager to learn, especially through participation. The build went well with the usual head scratching moments, the occasional piece remade and "Ah ha" moments when a concept clicked. Nearing the end of the two weeks it became clear to me that we would have to push to get the boat complete enough to launch on Friday, so we pushed the group a little harder. They responded with enthusiasm and focused effort. The best moment, a moment I intend to intentionally build into each program like this from now on, came in the last hour before the intended launch time. The elves, myself, my coworker and a volunteer, were quickly trying to wrap up the last small details when some of the more invested Young Marines came in to check on the boat. They saw that we were pushing to finish and instead of standing idly by, grabbing their phone text someone or generally being unhelpful, they asked what they could do to help. And help they did! It was like adding 6 skilled young shipwrights. In a flash we were done, the first picture is moments afterwards. The young men and women you see carrying the boat to launch were the ones that jumped in to finish the job. In what is a gratifying job filled with good moments and successes this was absolutely the highlight. I am proud of the job they did and think they turned out a great little boat. Thank you to Chris and the moderators here at WFF.com for allowing me to share my story. I will be posting the boat in the classifieds if you have any interest.