Friday, October 04, 2013


Sailtember dude

A few weeks ago I heard about a guy who lives not too far away from me in Massachusetts who had set himself a challenge to go sailing every day in September. He had bought an old Laser and has access to a small sloop, not to mention he apparently has several friends with larger boats, so he had plenty of choices of what to sail.

As far as I could gather from his blog and an exchange of emails, he has a business that gives him plenty of free time, he likes a challenge, and he feels he owes himself doing something like sailing a lot after a stressful couple of years dealing with some family matters. So I offered to go Laser sailing with him some time before I headed off to Europe in early September.

I see now from his blog Sailtember that he did achieve his ambition to sail every day in the month, something I have never achieved in spite of having at least as much free time as he does. Good for him!

And what a lot of adventures he had along the way!

There was the encounter with the Pissing Cop.

There was the day he waited all day for the rain to clear and then went sailing around sunset in a lightning storm.

There was a day with better weather which he seems to have spent driving all over Massachusetts collecting various boat parts which he had previously forgotten to pick up. But he still managed to get out for a sunset sail in his Laser.

There was the weekend he went out on his Laser to watch the Azorean Whale Boat Racing in New Bedford that seemed to be mainly memorable for the extreme amount of boat ramp mayhem and trailer park hassle on both day 1 and day 2. He's a better man than me. I always try to go and launch somewhere quieter when I can see that the boat ramp maniacs are out in force.

And this guy has connections! He somehow managed to get himself invited to crew on something called a J-80 in a 3 day regatta on Lake Winnipesaukee. I think a J-80 is basically like a big Laser only it has cupholders and costs 7 times as much.

And one day he managed to get a ride with his girlfriend on his friend's father's 40+ foot boat across Buzzards Bay from Padanaram to Cuttyhunk. (And back.) I've always wanted to do that one day, but in a Laser of course. But hey, it all counts towards his Sailtember challenge.

So congratulations to Mason (the Sailtember dude's real name) on achieving his goal. I enjoyed the day that my friend and I went Laser sailing with him on Upper Narragansett Bay and was glad to contribute in a small way to help him with the challenge.

Maybe I should do something like that?

Go Laser sailing in Rhode Island every day in January?

Or then again, maybe not.


Frankie Perussault said...

A challenge is a challenge. But having to go sailing everyday as a must sounds like drug addiction to me. Don't get me wrong. I did hear that scientists have found out that sport can have the same effects as a drug and have the same symptoms of withdrawal if you just don't get your amount of... running or sailing or whatever. Have you experienced that?

Tillerman said...

That's a great question Frankie. I think we experience something like withdrawal symptoms whenever we go for a while without participating in some activity that we have been doing regularly and that we enjoy. There was one late winter/early spring a few years back when I hadn't been sailing for quite a long time and even my on-line friends noticed that I was becoming very "cranky", A chilly sail on the Sakonnet cured me immediately.

On the other hand I don't think I would want to sail every day for a month. I did sail 13 days in a row on my recent trip to Menorca, and that was great. But when I'm at home there are so many other things I want to do - go for long runs, visit grandchildren to name only two - that forcing myself to miss things like that to go sailing every day would not be as much fun. I think 2 to 4 sailing days a week is the right balance for me. Less than that and I miss it; more than that and it's crowding other things out of my life.

Frankie Perussault said...

I am reassured now, I thought for a while that you were an addict!

Tillerman said...

My only addictions are Marmite and Tillerwoman.

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