On Wednesday the word went around that winds for Thursday would include gusts in the 40s. And, like in any organization, rumors swirled. No way would we race. Some people were already taking their masts down or putting their bottom covers on. Phones were pulled from pockets. Forecasts checked. Some had winds slightly lower. No one knew for sure but everyone acted like they did. The general sense in the air was that the regatta was finished as of Wednesday afternoon.
But then at the banquet Wednesday night it was announced, a final decision on whether we would race would be made Thursday morning at 8 a.m. One tried to be philosophical about it and not worry too much about this kind of ambiguity. The day would bring what it would bring. But on waking Thursday it looked as if it was going to be the worst kind of day; winds just on the cusp of acceptable. People milled around the notice board. They tried to get on the fssa.com website which is another place the announcement would be made. The website was down (of course, that’s just the rule of the universe!). Eric Bussell put on sunblock, sure we would sail. We headed to breakfast and tried to prepare as if we were going out, even though we knew it would be a very, very hard day. I tried to eat but I just didn’t have much appetite. So finally, at 8:10 a.m. I texted the fount of all knowledge; Diane Kampf. She texted me right back (bless her heart!) to say the racing had been canceled. Miraculously, my appetite came right back!
Returning to the club to pack up our boat we saw Tom Clark from Chattanooga. We all agreed that we were relieved with the decision. Tom said, “Today, sanity reigned.” Then his hat blew off and he had to chase it down the parking lot.
|Bruce Kitchen announcing trophies|
|table full of perpetual trophies|
Not too much longer, after the awards and everything, we were taking down our tent. Ben stepped away to answer the call of nature, I set to rolling up a sleeping bag, when out of the corner of my eye I saw our empty tent sailing like a tumbleweed right for the harbor. NOOOOOOOOOO! I ran the fastest 100 yards of my life, only to watch as the tent sank into the green water. I will not tell you what I said next. I will tell you I could hear Lynn Kitchen laughing her posterior off. Still, to her credit, she and Bruce came and lent me a hand as I jumped into the water (remembering to take out my electronic key and phone first) and dragged the tent back to land. It was very very cold water.
After we’d packed up we wandered Sandusky a bit, from West Marine to the Maritime Museum. We saw various other Scot sailors, including Robert and Mandy Cummings, John and Connie Eckard and Kathy and Ray Trask, doing the same. We ate one last time at the New Sandusky Fish House. This time we ate with our elbows holding down our plates as the gusts built steadily.
The ride home was especially blustery and every time a gust hit us, rocking the car and boat, I thanked the wise race committee once again for doing the right thing!