Sunday, April 28, 2013

Here we are at the annual Chattanooga Choo Choo at Privateer Yacht Club. Ben is smiling, and we are having fun, but my goodness! The sailors here keep joking that it is monsoon season....
 We drank many, many toasts to Charlie Fowler, a sailmaker, former Flying Scot district governor and founder of the Dixie Lakes District, who died April 21. We will all miss him very much.
 Everyone else was hanging out at the clubhouse. We put Sophie in and then dashed for cover as the skies opened again!
Can you see the rain spewing off the boom?!That's us sailing in a downpour!

We've sailed in all conditions at Chattanooga but it is safe to say this is the wettest we've ever been. Still, we got in three races yesterday and after the first few squalls it turned into a surprisingly pleasant sailing day. I just hope all my gear dries out so I can put it all back on and do it again today!

Monday, April 15, 2013

Post Mortem..

First, here is a question. What happens when you have "Wreckless," "Irresponsible" AND "Knot Guilty" (Willson Jenkins, a lawyer) on the race course at one time?! I leave it to your imagination!!

Well, I don't know what happened, but I totally dropped the blogging ball after Saturday morning, resulting in zero information about the regatta at all!! Things did look doubtful, but we all piled in our boats and headed to the course, where the wind mamby-pambied around for a while; here, then gone, then here again. That gave the race committee fits, but finally they decided there was enough wind to race. That first race became painfully streaky at points and was one of those races that was very unpredictable. Still, it was a race!

Plus, the wind picked up a bit after that. I'm not saying we were hiking or anything, but we were all moving and the wind was fairly consistent. So we got the desired four races in on Saturday, which, based on what we saw in the morning, was a  miracle.

Ben and I were feeling pretty darn good, too. We'd had some really good finishes, including a second place (behind Jeff and Amy Linton, 2012 North American champions among other things, so that's practically a first place!), and the other finishes were pretty high also. It was only after dinner, when we went to check the standings, that we discovered we'd been OCS (on course side, ie over the line) in TWO races! Ugh. That's a first.

What we "learned" this regatta, numbers (any numbers!!) are better than letters!

Still, we had a great time. The total number of, not just out of town, but out of district boats, was a real testament to how much traveling race organizer John Kreidler has done over the years. One day we'll get him up to the Glow in the Dark!!

Here is John with Ben in Lake Hartwell's really really nice clubhouse.

Sunday was a bit more of the same, with light winds but it looked promising. At one point Ben and I were both on the high side! That was great for four of the five legs, at which point the wind completely died, the water was like glass. ... need I say more?!

Anyway, that was it for racing, and we all congregated back at the clubhouse for a nice lunch and trophy presentation. Winning skipper Jeff Linton made a point to note how much traveling John Kreidler has been doing and strongly urged others in the Dixie Lakes District to do the same. Amen!!

Saturday, April 13, 2013

In South Carolina the azaleas are in bloom

Hard as it might be to imagine, in South Carolina, where we are attending the Dixie Lakes district championships at Lake Hartwell, spring has been here for a while. Trees are blooming and azaleas are exploding in color everywhere you look. The club and grounds here are lovely and the club has many dedicated racers and experienced race committee members. Plus, check it out! Doesn't the club house look church-like?

Western South Carolina, it turns out, it central to many places. There are sailors here from New Orleans, Sarasota area, Maryland and Ohio and it seems that it took each of us about the same amount of time to get here. We got here Friday afternoon, set up our tent and our boat and enjoyed visiting with John Kreidler , who is hosting, plus Tom Hohler, Chris Czapleski, John Wake, Jeff and Amy Linton, Wilson Jenkins, and Corky and Molly Hadden. This morning, although it is beautiful and sunny, the wind has, for the moment, abandoned us. There is much talk of playing Cornhole and drinking beer....time will tell......