Yesterday was the Whitebread sailing race which is a 30-mile course around Shelter Island. My father has been sailing in it with some friends of ours on their J-80 for the last few years. It is an all day race and a very big deal in the local sailing community. I never was a big sailor, but I took lessons as a kid and know my port from starboard but that about concludes my knowledge of all things boat related. I sailed in a few local races with the crew over the summer and somehow in my confusion and spastic scrambling managed to convince the skipper that I was not entirely useless (I am still trying to figure out how that one was achieved. I’m putting my money on my stimulating conversation ability and adorableness). BUT since I was deemed useful enough to have onboard (or more likely because no one else was available) I was invited to sail the Whitebread, and for you sailing buffs out there, yes it is a Whitbread spoof.
Now at 21 years of age I consider myself in decent shape. I mean, I do teach skiing all winter, and currently work in a winery dragging a billion pound hoses around all day, so I can’t be completely out of shape, right? Maybe this is a different kind of fitness, maybe it was just a particularly exhausting sail, but whatever the reason I was wiped, I was the one suggesting that we leave the after party early, and I was the one asleep by 9 o’clock on a Saturday–pathetic I know. In my defense we were expecting 16 mile and hour winds, we got 30 mile an hour. We were expecting enough down time on the boat to be able to eat a sandwich for lunch, we frantically shoved them down our throats while tacking and hiking out over the side as lettuce from the next persons’ sandwich flew about and smacked us in the face. We anticipated relatively flat water, and instead road up and down, up and down ocean-sized waves for an hour while hiking out as far as we could and clinging onto the life line for dear life, as gallon after gallon of water came crashing down on our heads. Don’t get me wrong, I loved every second of this wild 5-hour race, but it was no pleasure cruise, we were racing!