Friday, September 7, 2007

The Return


It was calm this morning behind Wings Neck. I slept a bit late, not rising till about 7:30 and then somewhat stiffly. After breakfast I put the table up in the cabin and set up the laptop to write my morning entry. Then I sorted and semi-packed clothes into bags, and moved all the remaining perishables with the few remaining chunks of ice from the big boat cooler into the small carry-on cooler. I dumped some milk and humus I had forgotten to put away last night. When I was on deck a guy came over from a neighboring boat and basically welcomed me to Pocasset. We talked for a while. He offered to run me up the river in his dinghy into town, but I was eager to get on my way so I would get home before Nancy. I vowed to return and poke around in this corner of the Bay.

Buzzards Bay rarely disappoints. The breeze picked up from the southeast as I got the sails up and picked my way up the lee of Wings Neck. By the time I was out in Hog Island channel the wind was from the SSW and we were heeled way over. I got both sails in tight and picked the best upwind course I could. Then Autoleena took over. She does well upwind. We made it past the can off Bird Island without a tack, and in fact only made one tack all day, a quick one off Angelica Point. The last three miles or so we had fallen off the wind a bit and were just boiling along at 5.5 knots happy as could be. We sailed right up to the first buoys of the channel into my marina before I reeled in the sails. I tied up at my mooring at 2, was in my car by 3:30.

London is a small boat. I think you experience the sea and the weather more, shall we say, fully, in a small boat. The sea is right there. We can lean out of the cockpit and touch it, rinse our hands, or the supper pot.

Now back on land I realize how sore and stiff I am from being in the boat. I am covered in bruises and small wounds of whose cause and timing I have no idea. I am also recovering from a sprained wrist (Isle Au Haut) which I aggravated in the last few days of long 'Time And Distance' sails, probably by catching myself with my right hand when flung about by a wave or a gust of wind. The last couple days have been windy and strenuous. Yet I have had a wonderful time. I feel great.
Today is the first time I have been on land since Monday afternoon in Biddeford Pool -- that's three days afloat alone and about 150 miles. It was about another 130 miles from the Pool to Northeast harbor. So overall London probably sailed about 600 miles in the last few weeks. In the annals of seafaring this journey was not even a speck on the tiniest page of the smallest log book. But it is not about distance.

The weather has been fabulous, with only a little fog and humidity. Other than the rain at Biddeford Pool and Linekin Bay it has been dry. There have been calm days, but also days with plenty of wind. Although I wear a hat, sun block and spend much of my time trying to stay out of the sun, I am brown as a nut and feel thinner and stronger.
What more could one ask?

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