So, I haven't posted much about sailing this summer for a variety of reasons--the move, & the family stuff being mainly what this summer has been about. In fact, I haven't been doing as much sailing this summer--major bummer, and now we're already moving towards fall. Yikes!! Summer has just disappeared. Anyhow, finally sailing post--of sorts.
Had a serious crappy end to my sailing season last summer (although I did have a few post-season races that were a lot of fun--racing in December, anyone?). So when Spring rolled around this year, I wasn't exactly chomping at the bit to be back out there & I didn't have a boat to be chomping for as it was, so I was back on the "dating market" for a new sailing "home". And we missed going to the Spin Sheet Crew Listings Party because my kid had a rowing regatta that day so I had absolutely no leads other that a few contacts from previous years. And, on top of it all, my confidence in my ability was at an all-time low, so I was struggling a lot. As it was, I uploaded my info to Spin Sheet & almost immediately received an email asking for me to crew for the Annapolis Yacht Club's Wednesday Night Series on a boat that was just beginning to campaign. "Very cool", I thought because the team would be built from the ground up. I was getting excited again because it also provided me with an opportunity to learn a new position on the boat. But, as it is with dating, not every first date becomes a relationship & that one was pretty nasty as I would find out very soon & what confidence I did have was blown right out of the proverbial water on that boat. So, not only was a boat-less again, I also had no ride for Wednesday nights, let alone any weekend regattas. Bleh!
I got lucky for Screwpile as I'd written before, & also was able to hop on board another boat that I do fall series with for Wednesdays, but as their crew is well-established, there is really little for me to do other than check stays & the occasional grinding & tailing--basically rail meat, but at least I'm getting out. The down side to all of this is that I'm not practicing my skills at any trim--not jib, not spin, & certainly not main. Which sucks & further erodes my confidence. But here's where the fun starts--this story isn't a downer at all!
On Friday evening I got a text from my friend C, who knows a ton of sailors in Annapolis. She wanted to know if I could go out on a friend's boat for the C.R.A.B. Regatta for Saturday. C.R.A.B. stands for Chesapeake Region Accessible Boating--great for getting folk out on the bay sailing who have disabilities. Link: http://crabsailing.org/ The skipper needed a spin trimmer & could I step in? OK, my initial gut reaction was panic. I really wanted to go but as I've said, my confidence had been sorely shaken & the thought of jumping on a boat & trimming the spinnaker, & possibly screwing up since I haven't had much practice this season, made my stomach lurch. But I decided that I'd go, if for no other reason that I wanted to make connections for Annapolis Race Week, since, yet again, I didn't have a ride.
What a great time we had! I honestly can say that the crew just fit immediately--we got it done & when we finished every single one of us had huge smiles--and over & over I heard people saying that it was the best race that they'd had all season. How cool was that? The wind was awesome, the skipper said that the boat was sailing at its rating, & we just had great fun rolling the folks in front of us, even when we were over early at the start. And we saw the first C.R.A.B. boat take the bullet--we gave out huge cheers as we watched behind us as they crossed the finish. Later, the skipper said that I did a great job with my trimming. When I said that I needed a ride for race week, well--happy ending--I have one & I couldn't be more excited. This boat is fun & fast & I am rejuvenated. I can't wait!