Skip to main content

The Year That Was

So it’s goodbye to 2010, a year that was a vast improvement over its predecessor in almost every respect. In looking back I find few causes for complaint, which is a rare thing indeed for a sailor in the Northeast.A suspiciously warm spring meant that the essential boat projects got done and the non-essential ones got half done; already I was way up on 2009.Spring merged into summer

So it’s goodbye to 2010, a year that was a vast improvement over its predecessor in almost every respect. In looking back I find few causes for complaint, which is a rare thing indeed for a sailor in the Northeast.

A suspiciously warm spring meant that the essential boat projects got done and the non-essential ones got half done; already I was way up on 2009.

Spring merged into summer and still the sun shone, the skies remained blue, and we enjoyed weekend after glorious weekend of sparkling sailing days and (amazingly for New England) fine, warm breeze. Not to bore you with the details, but we deserved such a summer after the monsoonlike deluges of 2009. In fact, the only times it really rained for days on end were (naturally) on the two occasions I’d blocked time off to install a windlass: a small price to pay.

Anyway, looking back at such a summer—and fall, for in late October we were still sailing in shirtsleeves—got me thinking about other events of 2010, some good, others not so much.

There was America’s Cup 33 and the end of the Alinghi era—good. SAIL’s 40th anniversary—very good. The youngest-circumnavigator circus—bad. Abby Sunderland’s Indian Ocean rescue—good. Abby Sunderland being in the Indian Ocean in winter—bad. The thought of the America’s Cup getting back to what used to pass for normal—good. The decision to hold AC 34 in multihulls—not so good. The lineup of new sailboats at the Annapolis show—excellent.

Apart from that, there actually wasn’t much that stuck in the mind, which is probably a good thing for those of us who would rather concentrate on the sailing than worry about the news. Here’s hoping 2011 is yet another step up.

Back in our 40th anniversary issue last February, we paid tribute to stalwart executive editor Charles Mason, whose stamp had been on every single issue of SAIL. Charles has now decided that 41 years of monthly deadlines and stubborn editors is quite enough. Now he’ll be able to spend more time messing about in boats than writing about them, an enviable situation indeed. His replacement as executive editor is former senior editor Charlie Doane, whose writings are well known to SAIL readers. We’ll miss Charles and his trove of sailing knowledge, but welcome Charlie and the skills and outlook he brings with him.

Related

Ulysse Nardin promo photo

The Ocean Race Names Official Timekeeper

With just under one year before the start of The 2022-23 Ocean Race, Swiss watch manufacturer Ulysse Nardin has been named the official timekeeper of the race. The Ocean Race, formerly known as the Volvo Ocean Race and before that the Whitbread Round the World Race, announced ...read more

Arthur Daniel_RORC Maserati - RORC Transatlantic 2022 - Jan 15th -Social Media-4

Fast Finishes for the RORC Leaders

Over the weekend, the first finishers of the 2022 RORC Transat made landfall in Grenada, led by Giovanni Soldini’s Multi70 Maserati, which was awarded line honors with a corrected time of six days, 18 hours and 51 minutes. Maserati finished ahead of Peter Cunningham’s MOD70 ...read more

Background-02

Notice to Mariners: A Blog from the SAIL Editors

As a teenager, I stumbled across a copy of Derek Lundy’s Godforsaken Sea in the back room of a used bookshop. I had never heard of the Vendée Globe and frankly found all the boat-speak in the first 50 pages a little difficult to get through. But Lundy’s storytelling and the draw ...read more

Screen-Shot-2022-01-13-at-9.26.59-AM2048x

VIDEO: Celestial Navigation Episode 2

Celestial navigation is an invaluable tool for all kinds of sailors. In episode two of the celestial navigation series, learn the basic elements of navigation and the sight reduction process using declination and GHA to determine the Geographic Position and navigate using a ...read more

Film-poster

Cruising: Year of the Sea Shanty

Along with other timeless pursuits, like baking sourdough and gardening, singing sea shanties surged back into popularity during the recent lockdown, thanks, in part, to the app TikTok and its “duet” feature, which allows singers from around the world create music together. By ...read more

Book-Cover-9780712353700

Book Review: Sailor Song

Sailor Song is the ultimate guide to the music of working sailors during the 18th and 19th centuries. The book includes lyrics and sheet music for 50 of the most beloved sea songs with fascinating historical background on the adjoining page. Chapter introductions provide ...read more

Screen Shot 2022-01-12 at 10.42.33 AM

Race Update: RORC Transat

With the fleet leaders about halfway to Grenada, the 2022 RORC Transatlantic is shaking out to be a tactically interesting one. The race, now in its 8th edition, began on Saturday with 30 teams ranging from 70-foot catamarans to a 28-foot JPK 1010. Early in the race, light winds ...read more

01-LEAD-IMG_1585

Experience: Fire Down Below

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, local racing had resumed with household crews only. My wife, though, while always up for a pleasure sail, was not up for this kind of thing, so, for the fifth time in what was any measure an unusual sailing season, I found myself singlehanding my ...read more