Okay - so from the preceding stories I have a few questions:
1. Sea Anchoring: What is the principle behind sea anchors - and at what point are they really needed? Don't get too technical here - just explain what the sailor is trying to achieve for us newbies - and the pros and cons of the various means. For example, Allen talks about drogues he was using, he also talks about sea chutes, etc. Then there have also been discussions about tandem anchors, etc. on this site. What's the skinny?
2. Sailing into the slip: How about some tips on this. I've been practicing heaving to in open water - but I'm not yet confident enough to sail in. One of the issues is that with our water down, there's a bottle neck in our marina that leaves maybe 8 feet on either side of our boat coming in/out (with boats on either side). Would that bother the salts out there? Or is that nothing? Giu - you need to get us a video of this (if you haven't already). They've been great tools.
3. The decision to fall off or beat in big wind and waves: When/how is this decision made? In other words, there's the comfort variable in choosing to beat or not in the world of daysailing (when you have the luxury to choose). But I assume that goes out the hatch pretty quickly in a storm. And I understand at some point that the wind and the sea will make the decision for you. But what about the in between. What drives the decision and how do you prepare?