Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Thank You Ben

On Saturday, Mother Nature and the old man in the sea were in a foul mood.  She was whipping up wind gusts of 50 knots and he was spitting white caps from the top of rollers.  I want to learn to sail in those conditions safely, but I’ll wait until I have a little more experience and a qualified crew.

On Sunday, despite the prospect of going sailing with Ben, I found myself on Sojourn just after sunrise.  Mother Nature and the old man in the sea had taken a break from the previous day’s mayhem.  What amazes me every time is that the same ordinary morning at the house can be such a treat of tranquility on the water.
Ben and I had tentatively made plans to sail on his beautiful Mason 43, Triumph.  Spending time on Triumph was always a treat, but now that I have taken sailing as my own hobby, I’m coming to appreciate just what a creature of functional elegance and beauty she is.  While on Sojourn that morning, I got the text that we were on.  I grabbed my foulies and headed for Ballard.

In fact, the foulies were not needed, just a couple of layers and some sun glasses.  We cast off, hoisted the sails and set the wind vane for a port tack on the southerly 10 knot breeze.  Triumph’s thirty thousand pounds of displacement give it a slightly different flavor than on Sojourn, but she transmits that same sense of awesome power in wind that I’ve spoken of before.  Just thinking about it makes me alive.

We sailed south to Elliot Bay, where upon its shore sits Seattle proper.  It is almost a crime that I didn’t get a photo if for no other reason than for this blog.  There was a grain ship anchored in the bay waiting to be loaded.  Ben did get a photo of me in front of that with his cell phone  IMAG0832
We circled around the ship and headed back to Shilshole.   

I’m thankful to Ben both for this trip, which by his calculus added a month to the end of both of our lives and for being the catalyst to making sailing my own hobby and labor of love.  The latter, by his calculus, which I can find no fault in, has already added a years to the end of my life. 

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