My sailing club had a superb regatta yesterday afternoon. We were nine dinghies and eight catamarans. The wind was a westerly and moderate one, but very unstable with buffeting gusts, so we had to be very dynamic with the mainsheet. The regatta was held in three rounds. The first was quite easy in a 10-knot breeze. For the second, the wind freshened to about 15 knots and there was a heavy swell. The close haul to the first buoy was a “bitch”.
By the time we had the third round, the wind was rising to about 18 knots and gusting at about 20. I had not fitted my reefing line. Boats were capsizing all over the place – mine didn’t, but I was bailing all the time. By that time I decided to leave the race and return to the beach, after signalling to the safety boat to help a capsized dinghy with the mast stuck in the bottom and filling with water. Even coming in to the beach, I broached in the waves and had to make a second attempt at beaching. It was hairy! But no one was hurt and only two boats suffered minor damage, other than a Laser with a broken mast.
The sea is fickle, and not to be fooled with! We must never forget that.
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I am going away today for a whole week in Brittany, as mentioned in an earlier posting. My wife needs the laptop computer, and we agreed that a week without blogs or internet would be good for me. The only electronic devices I will have will be my mobile phone, VHF for the boat and and an MP3 player to play music for whilst I read real books in the evenings.
I’ll be back next Sunday (25th August), and my prayers and thoughts go out to Deacon Jonathan Munn of our Diocese who will be ordained a priest next Saturday. See our diocesan website and the announcement.
If you are not moderated (if you have already posted and see your comments appearing immediately), you can send comments freely. Others will have to wait until I get back before seeing their comments appear. Thank you for your understanding.