Went down to the boat all alone this past Saturday, as always to do more work. But i was broke, and work costs money. And it was HOT- but I felt a tiiiinyyy little breeze on the back of my neck. Could this be the day? Could this be THE day?
I started getting anxious- chest tight, breathing heavily, I started getting everything ready. PFD, river chart, depth sounder, registration, Boat US stuff all good to go. Depth reading six and a half feet at the dock. It's not too late to back out.. Got the sail cover down, main halyard tied on, and all but one dock line off (corner slip- the owner knew I was a newbie!).
Now to start the A-4, blower on for a few mins, and as only me and whomever has had this particular boat knows how to do, juuust the right amount of choke. She fired up with a throaty little roar
Cast off the last line and I am free!
It took what seemed like FOREVER to get out to the river, but there was just enough breeze to form ripples on the water- which seemed like Hurricane Andrew to me! Four sailboats in a row, all motoring South, none under sail. EVERY small family in the tri-state area just anchoring out to enjoy a reprieve from the hot day. Here goes nothing, maybe no one will notice me going forward to hoist the main.
A beautiful sight indeed, just one idiot under main alone heading almost directly into the the southerly wind. But it felt GREAT. I had to be going 20 knots against a 3 knot wind, or at least it felt that way. Working the main sheet, over working the main sheet, working the main sheet some more. Time for the first tack! Plenty of momentum, just pop that cleat and turn the wheel hard- I made it!
There is no moral to this story, just a thanks to all with the patience to put up with a newbie's stupid questions. Now if I could just figure out how to balance the main AND jib!