Here is the final post that I wrote on our sailing holiday…
We left Saltspring early this morning to make slack tide at Porlier Pass. I love getting up and going early and this morning was not disappointing. It had rained overnight and there was a low cloud coating all the hills and us with it’s dewy fingertips making every thing extra sleepy as our wake and gentle purring of our engine disturbed the glassy water.
Hubby drove us to Porlier Pass , our exit point out of the Gulf Islands, while I cleaned and packed down below. We switched as we poked our nose out into the straight and so it was me who noticed the freshening north westerly and the sun starting to shine. So with the boys down below deeply involved in Lego, I set the sails.
I realised as I did this that while I set the sails on a daily basis, I typically leave the trimming to my husband because he’s better at it than me. He loves to tweak and constantly eek every last puff out of the sails. I don’t know exactly when I started deferring trim to him, likely it slowly crept over us as habits tend to, but I’m embarrassed to admit that I haven’t trimmed properly for a few years. I felt nervous an unsure about doing it. Darn, how did I not notice this habit happening!
So I set the sails and I trimmed them, and trimmed them some more and before I knew it we were flying along at 7.5 knots and I was gaining rapidly on another boat! I decided that my goal was to see if I could see an 8 on the speedo and before I knew it I was as obsessive about trimming (and having as much fun) as my husband usually is! We caught up to that other boat… But before I could feel properly smug I realised it was only about 24′ long. Not really fair game.
It’s fun having an autohelm. Usually I enjoy driving, but today I let it do the driving and tweaked the sails, enjoying the journey in a different way to usual. Pretty soon I started fantasising that I was a solo sailor…. Which I sort of was – if you’ve seen how ‘into’ Lego those two can get you’ll understand. It was pretty exhilarating to be flying along on your own, with the sun shining and the sound of the boat slicing through the waves. I’m no Ellen MacArthur but It’s fun to pretend to be for a few minutes.
I stood at the bow of the boat…. Not something I ever do under sail… Nor should you really, if you are interested in going fast, but I did it any way. It was exhilarating, feeling the power of the boat shoot through the waves on a glorious day. It reminded me of a day many years ago on the Tall Ship Lord Nelson. It was my first trip and I was quite terrified of climbing the mast. I’d been sent up at dawn and found my self at the very end of the yard arm for the first time. After completing my task I looked up and saw the ocean in all its glory for the first time. That may have been the exact moment I fell in love with sailing.
My solo sailor bliss continued for an hour before the young man appeared on deck looking a little green and announcing that he wanted some fresh air before lunch. It turned out that the Lego kit he had received from Gramma had contained 2 bags. Hubby noted that A.’s stomach is about one bag strong. He had completed the first bag, gone to the head (toilet), thrown up, came up for some lunch and air then went straight back down to complete the second bag. That’s dedication for you.
We gently pulled into our home slip a few hours later. A month on the water now complete. A. Couldn’t decide if he was terribly sad to be going home or looking forwards to seeing his toys again. Hubby and I quickly slipping into our cleaning the boat up routines. It won’t be long before we’re back on the water again.