Lin Pardey said it best when she said, we create our own luck. I looked out over the water as the sun disappeared somewhere behind the dark storm clouds. Adam and his boat were overdue. They had set out on their first real solo trip earlier that day; the weather was bad and getting worse.
In the early darkness my VHF crackled to life. Adam had made it back tired but happy and in one piece. He learned many lessons on his first solo voyage but there was one more that none of us had counted on.
When you least expect it, expect it!
Together we went down to secure his new Minto Ranger in the boat house. It was blowing hard out last night. We discussed his trip and went over the video and pictures he took so I could help him with a few small issues he had. The house shook in the wind and I asked him how he secured the boat to the mooring. It sounded like he had done a good job but I interjected that I always tie two lines through a mooring.
The grinding of the coffee maker early this morning stole me from my deep slumber just as Jessica Alba was running into to my arms to profess her undying love for me. Alan put some pants on, the boat is gone, was all he said. I jumped up, scrambling for clothes and coffee and we were off in search of his elusive unnamed boat. As we drove the coast searching, I chuckled to myself when I remembered a line from Brother Where Art Thou, She went and R-U-N-N-O F T.
You can call it dumb fucking luck but I think that there is more to it than that. We found the boat sitting safe and unharmed half way between two small marinas. The half inch double braid line was chafed clean through. By some rare and unknown miracle she had actually anchored herself to the dock. Go figure.
We went over every scenario possible of how the boat could have actually anchored itself to the dock, but the only answer we came up with is that there is magic in these islands.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, the harder I work, the luckier I get. Sailing is a lot of work and a bit of luck. There are always new lessons to be learned and Adam is well on his way. He has proved to himself that he is his own captain. There will be many more lessons in his journey, some hard earned, some hard learned. We’ve all been there and we’ve all done stupid shit. If you turn your back on the sea for one second she will take everything form you. There are a lot of things you can learn from books, sailing isn’t one of them.
If you haven’t been aground, you haven’t been around.