Monday, September 15, 2003

Sailing Adventures 

The "I" key is not working very well on this keyboard plus I'm a bit lazy right now so I am posting part of an e-mail I sent my mom:

I had a great time Sailing on the Isle of Wight. We drove down on Thursday and went out on the boat that afternoon for a Practice Race. The weather was not so good, but it was high wind, to the boat was pretty fast. My job was to un-clip and clip support wires for the mast every time we tacked. It's not very hard, but it did mean I had to run up and down the back of the boat at the very point when the deck is most tilted. Unlike the Longboats I'm used to, the race boat we were on has almost no sides to it Wich is why I was picked, because I'm used to running about on a boat thats tilting and rocking.

After the race we docked the boat in Cowes Marina, were all the race boats were docked. My co-workers tell me that it's tradition for the lightest member of the team to be hoisted up the mast. I learned later that it normally takes a lot of peer pressure to get the "victum" to agree to this. Once the victem reaches the top, the team of course walks off, leaving the poor person stranded up the mast cursing their work mates while the entire marina (Filled with over 250 boats) watches. Every year a diffrent excuse is used to encourage the person to agree to be hoisted up the mast. In my case I was asked to take the team photograph from the mast. So I harnesed up and went up the mast, with my camera.

I suspected they were up to somthing from the start, so I decided to have a little fun with them. Once I got to the top, I took my time taking the pictures, yelling for tmy team to move this way and that "..to get you all in frame." Then I took some pictures of the harbour, as the view is pretty good from 55ft up. Just to toy with them more I then yelled down that I was going to un-hook my harness to get a better angle for a photo. They decided to bring me down very quickly after that. I didn't tell anyone I was a climber untill later that night. The Managing Director of the company almost choked on his drink with laughter when he was told about the anual gag back-firing.

That night dinner was served a huge tent with all the teams in it. We moved onto the pub after dinner, which was pretty funny. Half the pub was filled with super rich people who knew nothing about sailing, but sure talked the talk. The other half were locals that pertend they are in the construction industry to see how long they can string these weekend warriors along. Both sides get drunker and drunker as the night progreses. At one point a group of four people I was talking with all realized they were pertending to be industry people at the same time.

The next day was the main race, and the water was packed with tons of boats. The racing was fun, but the wind was pretty light, so speeds were very low.

To cut a long story short, it was a great event, and I really want to go sailing right now!

But I'll go to bed instead, as its late, and my flat mate wants to use the computer.

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