The physio says “OK” to sailing… unless…

Old Gaffers visit Falmouth
Old Gaffers visit Falmouth

2nd June 2013

Mylor – Gull Rock – Mylor

F4, calm seas

25NM

…Unless… it’s blowing a hoolie!  And it wasn’t!  So, some three-and-a-half months after the injury, I’d been given a kind of all-clear to go sailing.  As long as it wasn’t too windy, and that I wore the knee brace, and probably not if it was raining.  We’re sailing in the UK – how often do conditions allow for that?!  The weather, sailing and physio gods had aligned for me on 2nd June, and we were good to go.

I confess to being a little bit nervous.  I was worried that I’d be slow, a bit useless, and worse, that it would hurt.  Unlike the River Hamble, where there’s 30 minutes from marina to sea (and the raising of the sails), at Mylor, the sails can be hauled within minutes.  Especially with an easterly, so, driving out through the moorings, we were hauling the mainsail – no messing!  We were also out near high water (I think) so there was plenty of water around to turn towards the bay.

And how was it?  Awesome.  I hadn’t forgotten the routines of exiting, where the fenders are stowed, how to coil a mooring warp, how to steer Whinchat into the wind when the main is hauled.  It was almost like breathing – no, wrong analogy.  It was more like walking, with a slight limp.  I was aware of the injury, and cautious, but the sailing was like walking.  It was great to be on the helm, and as we headed south, on a port tack, it mean that my ‘good’ knee was braced.  I am certain that my smile was as wide as wide can be.  As you can see from the photo above, the skies were dreamy, the Gaffs in Falmouth provided wonderful sights on the water.

It was one of those days when the wind fluked around.  It was never behind the beam all day.  This is exciting sailing, which Whinchat seems to just adore, shoulder in against the wind.  The wind flapped around, and died at times. Pete even dragged out the mackerel line when we were ghosting along, but then the wind came back, so the mackerel line was surfing!  Not ideal for catching mackerel, but perfect for sailing.  Whinchat has yielded one single fish, caught by my sister, which we threw back.  Her record is still safe!

As we came back into the harbour, we were beating into the wind, so were short tacking up the channel.  Man, I was out of practice on the winch!  More weight training needed!

Mooring had its own challenges, as I’m not authorised to ‘leap’ (step/jump) from the boat to the dock.  So, today, I called up the marina guys and they came to take our lines.  Perfect service.  Perfect day.  I’m back on the water!  Whoop! Whoop!