Game Plan Page 2

My husband Andy and I naively thought that our sailing game plan would remain the same after our daughters were born; we would just incorporate the children into our regatta mode and not skip a beat. So far, we have skipped beats —and runs, and even entire races. We have arrived late, gone to bed early, sailed better, and had more fun. Avery (8) and Jordan (6) love regattas, but their game plan
Author:
Publish date:
lawrence_children

Another job is to practice smiling, so that when the girls fall out of the boat my expression says, “Wow! What fun.” On light-air summer days, I excel at this, but on windy fall days “smile” and “grimace” are interchangeable. One day when the wind notched up to around 20 knots, Andy said, “Don’t worry. They’re having a ball. They love heavy air.” He was right. The girls were having a blast. “Yes,” I replied, “they’re having fun because they trust us to keep them safe. So let’s go in.”

Over the Labor Day series, just Jordan crewed for one day. In the bow she happily communed with nature. “Look Mommy. I’m a wave. . . a gull. . . the wind . . ..” Then it occurred to her that she could have the coveted forward crew spot all to herself and that her legs would extend to adjusted hiking straps. Andy had reverted to quick tacks and threw the tiller. I screamed, “Noooooo!!” The five-year-old narrowly avoided a dousing. The next day Jordan says to Avery, “You stay in the bow. We are a team and we don’t need you.” Parental units were inspired to have a chat about “team.”

On one of our last fall sailing days, Avery skippered the boat to shore. The air was light and she was at ease on the helm. She tugged on the tiller, gybing the boat. Andy and I ducked. She gybed again. Again, we ducked. She found this cause-and-effect sport hilarious. Again and again she pulled the tiller and we ducked. Then, channeling the Duchess from Alice in Wonderland, she commanded, “Off with their heads!” and gybed again. Andy and I laughed so hard that tears rolled down our cheeks. It was a perfect moment.

Related

IslandPacket349

Boat Review: Island Packet 349

After years of quiescence in the wake of the Great Recession, iconic Island Packet is back with its new 349, a re-boot of the old Estero that not only looks great, but takes the Island Packet style of sailing performance to a new level. Design & Construction First among the many ...read more

190219NEEL51

Video Tour: Neel 51 Trimaran

At this past fall’s Annapolis Boat Show, SAIL magazine had a chance to corner Neel Trimarans founder Eric Bruneel and have him give us a tour of the accommodations aboard the new Neel 51, winner of the “Multihull over 50ft” category in the 2019 Best Boats contest. For a complete ...read more

IMG_0173

Electronic “Flares” for Cruisers

The United States Coast Guard requires that all boats operating in coastal waters or on the high seas carry a selection of visual distress signals. Almost invariably, such signals include the pyrotechnic type, either handheld or fired from a flare pistol, but surely there are ...read more

M2-HOOK-TOP-AND-CHAIN-1

Gear: M2 Chain Hook from Mantus

Stay Hooked Chain hooks on anchor snubber lines tend to fall off when you least want them to. Not so this latest example from Mantus. The M2 Chain Hook is secured to the chain by a simple elastic strap, so it won’t come off when the snubber loosens. Made from corrosion-resistant ...read more

shutterstock_349918991

Successful Surf Landings with Wheels

“Ready to take the dink ashore?” Never had those words invoked as much anxiety as when my husband, Jeff, and I first moved to the Pacific Coast. Why? Because we had exactly zero experience with dinghy surf landings, and the possibility of being flipped upside down along with our ...read more