I had an idea for a group writing project. The topic is moments of blind stupidity while sailing which left you saying to yourself "What was I thinking?".
Mine goes back about 5 years or so ago when I was back in the UK. We chartered a Sunfast40 (great boat!) from Sunsail in Port Solent and spent the weekend sailing round the Isle of Wight. On the Saturday, we sailed to Yarmouth, one of the truly nicest harbors in the world. On the Sunday morning we headed off West early with the tide past Hurst Castle aiming to round the Needles by breakfast.
I had it in my head that it would be great to cook breakfast sailing round the Needles. I went below fired up the grill and stove and set to cooking up a classic English Breakfast - the Full Monty - eggs, bacon, toast, beans and a fried tomato. Some of the crew were feeling a little queazy and the smell of fried breakfast wasn't helping. In the end I think only three of us ate any of it.
I took the bacon grease-filled pan out from the grill, cooled it down by filling it with water out and laid flat over the sink. I then went up topsides to tuck in to a massive plate of fried cholesterol. It was a lovely late Spring day with a perfect breeze. With a combination of great sailing conditions, amazing scenery and a fantastic breakfast, I guess I forgot about the pan.
After heading South for about a mile past the Needles, we decided to tack and head East along the South Coast of the Isle of Wight. As the boat shifted from a Starboard heal to Port, the pan went flying.
The wooden sole was covered in a wet film of bacon grease spreading out over half the cabin. I went below to clean up and nearly slid the whole way down the boat.
It took me an hour of scrubbing with paper towels and salt to get the mess cleaned up.
What was I thinking?
If you have similarly moronic experiences, blog them and let me know and I will delight in sharing them. T-shirt to the best dumb thing done sailing.
The kids in the summer sailing camp at Raritan Yacht Club must have had the shock of a lifetime when a black fin appeared in the moored fleet close to the club. As it turned out it was a whale that had sadly repeatedly tried to beach itself. The shots below on the beach are 100 yards from my boat. From what I can gather the folks on the beach were successful in getting the whale back into the water but it then swam up the Raritan River and away from the sea. The whale fatally beached itself again later that day one last time :(
UPDATE: Whale spotted swimming near Perth Amboy beaches itself
— A small whale has washed ashore in the city after spending hours
Monday roaming the Raritan Bay and Raritan River, authorities and a
witness said. The 15- to 20-foot pilot whale turned up around 7 p.m.
Monday, beaching itself near Sadowsky Parkway and Catalpa Avenue and
drawing crowds of onlookers, said Kim Vasquez, a city resident at the
scene. She said firefighters were wetting the mammal as they waited for
marine rescuers to arrive. Initially reported to be a dolphin, the
whale was first spotted around 1:30 p.m. in the waters between Perth
Amboy and Staten Island, Perth Amboy Fire Chief David Volk said. Four
civilians from Staten Island saw it stranded on a sand bar off the
island's Wards Point section, and came over to push it back into the
water. That's when a crew on Perth Amboy's Marine 5 fire boat saw it swimming in the bay, Volk said.