Thursday, April 6, 2017

Wind is My Nemesis

I hate wind. Always have, since it started playing with my skirts as a schoolgirl, and moving right on to messing up my my hair as a young woman playing the dating game and exacerbating my uphill toil on long-distance bike trips. At the top of the hills in New Zealand's Coromandel Peninsula (video above), it was so hard to walk against the wind I decided to...forgo hiking and drive on.

I understand that wind is integral to the thermal protection of our atmosphere. But I don't have to like it.

The first couple of times I went out on a sailboat (first Greece then Chesapeake Bay), there was no wind. We stayed put. Stagnated. Not a bad fix to be in, to my mind.

Then Pope and I sailed to Smith Island, a crab-pickers' paradise threatened with global sea rise. A sudden 30-mph gust ripped our jib sail. A few seasons later, heading north on the Bay, we were spun like a top by an unexpected waterspout. Oh, wind. My nemesis.

For two days this week, motoring northward on the Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway, we were held back by strong adverse wind, pushing back on our boat and blowing in our faces all day.
My eyes felt like sandpaper.

Last night, we pulled up to a dock and tied down securely in anticipation of major thunderstorms--lightning, heavy rains approaching 20-30 mph. The night was restless.sandpaper.whistled through masts and ripped sail covers nearby.
Our boat heeled over at tbe dock and leaked from every hatch and porthole as well as a few of the screws through the deck that Pope resealed only last fall.

This morning, a third crew member came on board in anticipation of a calmer day.
But wind favors no man. Only one motorboat passed by today, struggling even with hundreds of horsepower. All swing bridges (which have to open to let sailboats pass) closed because of sustained winds of 20 mph and gusts over 30 mph. The forecast for tomorrow is the same.
In this video, you can hear the wind gusts here at the marina. Where we just signed up for a second night, to wait for the wind and the bridges.
We are stagnating. Stuck. As always, wind is my nemesis.

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