Just a quickie LO where I was trying to do more journaling and a simpler style.
In high school, sailing was my “sport”. I LOVED competitive yacht racing and would spend most Saturdays on the water. I sailed with my grandfather, Papa Karl, aboard “Airborne”- his 28’ O’Day. We were a slow boat, but thanks to handicaps, we could still win, and often did. My favorite races were the “Bikini Regattas”. We had to have a female captain (usually my mother) and at least 50% women. Sometimes my Grandmother, Mother Peggy, would come along for the ride.
Before the race actually began was the most exciting part of competitive yacht racing. Unlike powerboats, which can start from a dead-stop, sailboats are already moving. In fact, they must be completely under sail within an allotted time before the race begins (normally 15-30 minutes). This means that timing is everything. If the boat passes the start-line before the whistle blows it will have to do a full circle and cross again. Not only does the captain need to understand distances, wind speeds, and amount of time till the start, he also needs to know where he is in relation to all the other boats. Depending on whether our boat is Starboard or Port of someone and what tack they are on we may have to give way- figuring this out was usually my job. I’d sit up front and yell out “2 o’clock” etc to let the captain know when a boat was drawing close and what relation they were to our position. When everything came together (timing, speed, proper tack) then a perfect start- where the boat literally passes over the start line within a second of the horn- is achieved. This was always the most exciting moment of a yacht race.
The first marker could also be very thrilling as boats jockeyed for position. Two boats on the same tack and same heading could only gain advantage by being in front. Especially dastardly was a proper pass on the windward side. This allowed the passing sailboat to gain extra time by literally stealing the wind from the other boat. A sailboat that has its wind stolen in such a way at a marker will be stuck making a wider pass at a slower speed.
I loved yacht racing and wish it was a hobby I could still participate in. Josh doesn’t care for sailing and Papa Karl no longer races. Though I do enjoy sailing just for fun, it doesn’t compare to the thrill of a perfect start or a tight race. I will always miss my competitive sailing days. It is something I want my children to enjoy. Maybe one day I will have a chance to try again.
SEI Hippie chick
Heidi Swapp alphas
Joanne's "bliss" stick pin
Unknown ribbon and lace