Glynsky and Pete seem to be glued to the TV watching the FIFA Women’s Soccer Championship. I won’t speculate about their reasons, that would only get me into more trouble. Them making fun of me disliking “sports” here on diablog was enough.
I admit, Winston Churchill’s line:
Always a good cigar, sometimes a good whisky and no sports!
is one of my all time favorites. Another good one is:
Satire is being silly about the serious.
Sport is the exact opposite.
Mind you, during a normal week any NYer probably walks more miles then your average person during a whole month. But I don’t consider that “sport”.
And there is another activity I truly love and that others might consider sport, some even call it an art, and that is sailing.
Let me explain, how I came to love sailing and why it’s so wonderful.
Luckily, I was introduced to sailing at a young age and by real pros.
The first lessons were given on those great boats:
It is called a Folkboat, ours did not have engines though. Our teachers were old school and always said:
Motorboats are for those, who have not noticed that wind is free of charge.
A folkboat is like riding an old, forgiving horse. You cannot capsize it, this here won’t happen to you:
Hitting the dock isn’t a big deal, the wood can be repaired. At the same time, you can actually race a folkboat, it is great fun.
Our boats where minimalistic, no winches, no motor, we had to learn and do everything manually. Yes, the first couple of days with strong wind, in the evenings I wasn’t able to open my hands from holding the sheet rope. Still it was great fun and I learned a lot.
The next lessons I received on an old 80 feet yacht, very similar to this one:
Again, everything was done manually, setting the 200 square meter Genoa sail required 6-8 people. We sailed every day and some nights, under clear skies full of stars. It was a lifetime experience.
One day we discovered a school of codfish, brought about the boat and fished our lunch. It took minutes only from catching a fish to eating the fried fillets. Never before or after did I have such delicious fish. Plus, it saved me from peeling potatoes for a crew of 15 that day.
Being on a sailing boat is a unique experience. No cellphone, no radio, no TV, no computer, no noise and nothing blocking your sight. Believe me, after a week aboard your eyes already look different. And your ears enjoy the silence, the lack of modern day noise.
Your nerves relax, the wind and the sea are soothing. You come to a full stop in your life and, if you aren’t busy with the boat or cooking, all of a sudden you have ample time to think. Or read, or learn about knots, or take a sunbath.
Troubled by insomnia? Not while sailing. The daily duties aboard plus the constant breeze put you to sleep like a baby every evening.
Of course, as they say, on high sea and in court you are in God’s hands. If there is no wind, that means no sailing. And if there is too much wind, again no sailing. And that teaches you some patience and – even more importantly – to accept those things you cannot change. Again, a live time lesson.
More about one of the oldest and most fascinating activities or sports or arts in a later post.
Fair winds and following seas,