I had held a tiller in my hands at 7, then not again until 30-something. I ‘rediscovered’ sailing and (being an anal-retentive technical type) bought books, took classes, took more classes, chartered, and moved from CT to MO. Wait, what?!?! What was that last part? Yeah, moved from sailing heaven (debatable) to sailing hell (not debatable).
But wait! There’s actually sailing in central MO! Yes, I know! Who’d a thunk it? There’s a (very) casual (in organization only, the competition is NOT casual!) sailing club with a race schedule and everything! Woot! The Rev and Kilowatt go sailing! Racing even! Learned more in our first race, than… wait, already did that thread, was 'so-so' as threads go.
So the club takes the summer off to let the powerboats convert money into noise without our interference. Not a problem, the Rev got a transfer/’promotion’ at work so he’s too busy to post on sailnet, much less worry about racing sailboats.
Here we actually start our story (you poor fools who read this far): A co-worker had picked up a ‘free’ sailboat on the local internet classifieds. He had (kindly) offered to let me have first crack at it, but I had only an old, small pick-up that couldn’t hit 65mph if I had a passenger. Plus, I’ve read enough (see above) to be convinced that there is no boat so expensive as a ‘free’ one (though Charlie C. will probably get every dollar back that he spends on ‘Oh Joy’, the exception to the rule, I suppose). I listened to his stories of sailing on our local 100-acre lake (no heffalumps, just lots of submerged trees), will a bit of envy, really, just a small, little, miniscule, iota!!!! The jerk! ARRGH!
Fast forward a few weeks, I actually now own a vehicle capable of towing something heavier than me. The same co-worker comes in one Monday and says that there’s another sailboat listed. Said co-worker becomes (to be honest) a pest. His mission, it seems, is to make sure I buy this boat “with the colorful sail” (from the ad). Further research proves it to be a laser, circa 1983, with trailer for $750. Well, calls are made, Kilowatt and the Rev go look, but their minds were already made up (well MINE was, that’s for sure). The hull was in nice shape, with very slight dimples from the rollers on the trailer. A bargain that just needed to be used; it had been sitting unloved for years. Two new tires for the trailer, replace the wiring plug, and good to go! (Which is good, because the purse-strings are tied VERY tight now!)
Today it got splashed for the first time in perhaps twenty years! On that same 100-acre lake, there was a good bit of ‘messing about in boats’. More later, this has already gone on much too long…
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"... the only matter of consequence before me is what I will do with my alloted time. I can remain on shore, paralyzed with fear, or I can raise my sails and dip and soar in the breeze." - Richard Bode, First you have to row a little boat (pg. 94)