Monday, July 10, 2006

Sometimes not getting your own way is the best stroke of luck

This last week has been rather hectic so posting on the blog has been non existant This is a 'catch-up' post on stuff over the last week or so.

The weekend before last we visited Hunstanton Sailing club, just a short hop up the coast from Snettisham beach. I took both Wild Gosse and PoppyCock; I sailed WG and my daughter Emma sailed PC. Nothing outstanding happened except a mark rounding incident (already blogged).
I trailed WG back to Snett on the Sunday evening but left PC until later in he next week but this involved swapping trailers and needed help in lifting the boats so I thought 'Why not sail PoppyCock back and get the launching trolley car-topped back to the beach?' I had to work on Friday (my normal day off) so we (Emma and I) did it on Thursday afternoon.

I intended to catch the rising tide and arrive at the beach on the top of the tide but things didn't quite work out that way and we ended up setting off just after the tide had turned. I wasn't too concerned because there was a decent SW breeze so although we had to beat back against the tide I believed we would make it ok.
All was going well and we were making good progress when the wind just died completly! I headed right in and started to walk the boat along the beach all the while thinking "What am I going to do if the tide has gone when we get there?" Fortunately the wind piped up again after about 20 minutes and we were able to sail again and just made it to the edge of the beach as the very last of the water covering the mud dissapeared.
It was a frustrating sail but at the same time a mile stone, the first coastal passage (all of 5 miles) I had done on my own (I don't count sailing up the river blackwater from Stone to Maldon to a Snipe open when I was 18).
I think I wouild like to do some more of this kind of sailing but maybe in a boat better suited to it, maybe a Wayfarer.

I had one of those moments in the garage during the week when I longed for a boat to work on! Yes a strange feeling but I think I need the excuse to make space for being on my own with my thoughts and prayers. I find that I get a freshness in my spirit, energy and direction from such quite times, a stillness of the soul before my Maker.
So now I am on the look out for an old wooden Wafarer that I can work on and then use for coastal sailing. Anyone know of one? Preferably in Norfolk?

Last week I also made a hard disicion not to go to the Enterprise World Championships. It meant losing the deposit on the accomodation and the entry fee but it did mean that I woulddn't be living with the financial stress of paying for the event. When I planned it our budget had a good margin for the holiday but 'things happend' that eroded that margin (I have teenagers! and a daughter at Uni (now finished)).
I have consoled myself with the prospect of competing in the local North West Norfolk Sailing Association week, which has races at different clubs around the coast at a fraction of the coast and we can camp at the Beach for free. A 'No brainer' as some would say. I shall miss the Excitement and competition of the Worlds but this way I get to live in peace (relative peace.. I do have teenagers remember!) and my wife will still speak to me!.

This last weekend we only sailed on the Saturday in a force 4 (there was too much wind on the Sunday).
Only three of us in the race (where is everyone?) and it was a close race. I led for the first lap but lost the lead to Steve on the second beat and he rounded the windward mark ahead by several boat lengths.
I caught right up with him by the gybe mark and on the last leg I tried to get past him by sailing high and going fast but he went high with me. About half way along that leg I bore off and went below him, heading for the mark, by now we were on a dead run and I managed to sneak past him to leeward and pipped him at the mark by less than a boat length!

It was the only race we sailed as Jo, my daughter wasn't well, and Mark and Jenny, the other boat racing, wanted to go in.

Next weekend is the Dart open so as there will be no Enterprise racing I am planning on doing some coaching for the Enterprise fleet for those that would like some help. Should be interesting.


Tillerman said...

Interesting. I often fantasize about doing a coastal passage in a small sailing dinghy too. Not that I'm implying that your account is a fantasy. Just that that's as far as I've got so far.

Lorna said...

Wayfarer would be nic e..