Fall Season Sailing

shapeimage_2 (9)Looking forward from the tiller, I watched the crew pull off a smooth tack. Looking out from the boat, there were sails and and hulls gliding through and under the blue of the water and sky. Even though I had not slept well for a week from what I would later learn was viral bronchitis, sailing this weekend was what the doctor ordered. If moving to a dry climate is not an option because you’re already there, then sailing in a dry climate is the next step in living well.

There were four of us on the boat for the first time in racing mode. The extra hands helped. Our starts on Saturday could have been better and we had to refine our assignments, but we managed to achieve decent boat speed and improved over the course of the weekend.

After racing on Saturday, with Peter on the helm, we cruised in a building breeze to the Scorpion Bay marina to do a drive by on the Beneteau 37 that is for sale in a slip there. Beautiful boat. I would love to take it for a test drive though my nose would start to grow if I tried to convince anybody that I was seriously looking to upgrade. The marina, with its light wood walkways, looks like a nice facility and a few slips have been festooned with plastic palm trees and other tiki bar accessories.

Sunday the breeze was up in the morning as we sailed to the RC boat. It started to lighten before the first race but we timed our start well and rolled to windward another boat that got there early and had to loop around to kill time. By the start of the second race, the wind was gone. By staying close to the line, we drifted to a good start though a painter would have had no trouble capturing the moment, which stretched into minutes, on canvas. We headed south, and while heading toward the mark, albeit it laterally, put some distance between us and the only other boat near the line at the start. Eventually the wind filled in from the south and the west/east windward-leeward course because a beam reach. We rounded the leeward mark in first place and held on to the finish. (In the interest of full disclosure, we finished second once the alchemy of handicapping was applied.)

The sail back to the marina after the last race was perfect. There was time for long tacks in a steady breeze, a few photos, and some (intentionally vague adjective) performance enhancing Heinekens. In other words, our performance that day improved the more we discussed it while slaking our thirst. The best part was that we sailed reasonably well and know we can sail better. And will.

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