This week I met with Chuck South, owner of the South Mooring Co., at the old IHOP on 17th Street in Costa Mesa, and it was an instant flashback for me. Chuck and I walked in and there was Robin, formerly of Robin's Nest and Snug Harbor, with a big "hello, Dad" for Chuck.
I have seen Chuck South on the water for years and he attends most of the Newport Beach Harbor Commission meetings. He always greets you with a smile and hearty hello, and one gets a feeling of trust when you meet him. Maybe that's why the waitress Robin, who is not related to him, called Chuck "Dad" and came back to our table with a menu and Chuck's coffee already in hand.
We sat down and had some lunch and talked about old times and dropped names like Chuck Avery, Ed Cox, Seymour Beek and Mark Sites. Dropping names like this is like the secret handshake of Newport Harbor's "Good Ole Boys" club. Once Chuck realized that I have been working in the harbor for 22 years and had my own stories to tell, we both relaxed and continued telling sea stories.