Now I know that some of you old salts will have to roll your eyes and think I'm a total idiot. That's OK, because I'm not going to argue with you. There's a whole lot of 20/20 hindsight going on in my head at this point.
Here's the result of a major mis-calculation:
And here's the story.
Windy day. I figure a quick jaunt to the island and back to see how she handles in some decently gusty weather.
Mainsail up and sheeted in hard. Theoretically this will keep my bow to the wind, but the boat is still rocking and rolling quite a bit (I launch from a relatively turbulent area where the wind swirls around a point.)
Jib hanked on and flapping loosely in the wind.
I start pulling out the rudder to get it attached, stand up with one hand on the mast to keep my balance. WHAM big gust of air.
My instincts tell me to hold on tight and lean windward, but it wasn't enough. Over I went.
In slight panic mode I haul myself back up onto my rubber raft (that's how I get out to the boat.) Take a quick breather and assess the situation.
At this point the boat is 90'. Sails flat on the water.
I notice it's starting to turtle, and I thought "Oh ****, I better get it back up before it's too late. I manage to climb on the boat and hang off the top deck. No dice. It's still slowly turtling.
OK, while all this is happeneing, the nice crew on the ferry that I launch next to notice they have a man overboard and start honking their horn. At first I ignore the first couple blasts because they often do that to warn other boats that they're leaving dock.
I look over and see they're launching their rescue skiff. "Ah ****" was really the only thing going through my head. I know they're just being safe and concerned, but I was really in no danger except being cold, wet, and embarrassed.
They circle a couple times, and I assure them that I'm just fine and just trying to figure out how to get the boat righted. They're satisfied and they take off.
After hanging on the boat (the centerboard is up, so I have nothing to really leverage myself with) for 15 minutes or so and starting to get very cold, I decide to throw all the flotsam into the rubber raft, drag myself to shore and figure out where to go from there.
As I'm getting out, up come running 2 paramedics asking me where the drowning victim is.... I politely and appologetically explain the situation, and we all have a good laugh. They tell me it looks like it's a really nice boat to make me feel better and they go on their way. Appearently not less than 5 people on the ferry dock called 911 to let them know there was someone drowning and/or man overboard...
I run home, throw on some clothes, grab my camera. The picture you see above is now the coast guard hovering 100 yards off. I assume they got word and decided to check it out.
No communication with them today though.
Tomorrow, low tide, and recovery of Sisyphus.
It will take a bit longer for my ego to recover.
Thing's I learned today:
1: Sisyphus doesn't care what my sailing book says about how it should act with the mainsail up on a mooring.
2: Just ******* let go of the boat instead of pulling it over with you.
I hope you all had a better day than I did