Friday, August 11, 2006

Sailing Again 

It feels good to be back out on the water, particularly water with a higher concentration of salt in it than Lake Michigan. I showed up a little before 6pm last night at the docks and was greeted by surprised smiles from the captain and crew of "Air Rights". "Most people don't come back," said the Captain's wife, "they can't deal with the way he talks." I laughed and said, "I went to public high school."

Now, this week was a lot more fun than last week, primarily for two reasons: we had a lot more crew (almost too many!) and there was no storm.

With more crew, things ran smoother, cutting down on the captain's verbal explosions significantly (but far from eliminating them!). Everyone had assigned jobs, which meant no one had to do everything like last week. I was in charge of raising the main, the jib, and the spinnaker (the three sails we employed at varying times), of handling the attachment of the spinnaker lines, and of skirting the jib.

As it turned out, two of the people who "crewed" with us this time were loafers. They did nothing. They sat their laurels on the rails and talked. I thought the captain or someone knew them, but around the bar afterward it came to light no one knew them and they got on board the same way I did last week, by signing up to crew. I said to Captain, "I thought you actually hard to crew to do that." He said dourly, "You thought right, so thanks for actually working."

We didn't win the race this week, but neither did we come in last - at least one other boat was behind us. I felt a lot more comfortable in my own skin this week. Being able to anticipate what the Captain would order and when he would order it was a big help and that will only get better with more experience together. The first mate and I work well together it seems, by which I mean he is patient with me and explains a lot of things. Speaking of explaining things, lo and behold!, when we pulled back into port, Captain explained to me several finer pieces of docking, in a calm voice! I think he is surprised I came back and I think he's hoping I'll become dependable crew. I fully intend on it.

For those who are interested, "Air Rights" is a 32 foot S2 9.1.



Cool. Sounds like you're well on the way to becoming a competent racing sailor!

By Blogger Tillerman, at 9:08 AM  

I hope so Tillerman, I hope so. I have a long way to go and much to learn, though.


By Blogger Ryan, at 10:34 AM  

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