Independence Day Precursor

  What better way to celebrate the 3th of July than a sail with Charlie and Charlie? Charlie (my brother) and Charlie (my father-in-law) spent a lazy afternoon aboard Errant, sailing light winds and enjoying welcome weather — hot and sunny with nary a cloud or raindrop insight — after what feels like a month of rain.

  Both Charlies spent time at the helm, and both helped with an exceedingly ungraceful return to my slip at the Essex Shipyard. I decided to back into the slip in order to make boarding slightly easier now that Lake Champlain water levels have flooded over the docks. Gven the tight quarters and Errant’s less-than-agile reverse maneuverability (exaggerated by my still “green” command), I made a decision to enter the channel bow-first, pivot in the slightly larger opening in front of my slip, and then back into the slip.

Bad choice!

Too much momentum and a strong pull to port when reverseing contributed to a botched pivot. Did I mention tight quarters?

  Fortunately, my brother wields the force of Paul Bunyan and enough boating experience to anticipate our problem before it was too late. He managed to fend us off at midship, and helped me restore the pivot. Two friendly boaters from neighboring vessels assisted from the totally submerged finger, guiding us safely into our birth.

One of these days I am going to become as comfortable docking Errant as sailing her. Better yet, I hope to become as comfortable docking Errant as I as I have been docking powerboats for a quarter century. Stay tuned…


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