Monday, June 21, 2010

It's against the law!

After all my weather whining, things weren't nearly as bad as they were forecast to be. This weekend, we had Adam and his friend Kaci on board for a 2-day cruise to Poulsbo and back - I wanted this to be a memorable time for them. I think we succeeded there.

When we left the dock Friday evening, we had a 15-20 kt northerly which provided us a great close-hauled sail across Puget Sound to Agate Pass. With the main and yankee up, Eolian put her shoulder into it and we scooted across making better than 6 kt most of the way. It is always good to have a great sail for someone's first time on a sail boat, and I think this one did not disappoint Kaci. As this voyage started at about dinner time, Jane served us a salad first course while were under sail. After motoring thru Agate Pass, I put Adam at the helm while I went below and made the pasta for dinner. It is always intriguing behind Bainbridge Island, and it gave Adam some interesting pilotage to work thru. As it turned out, the timing worked out just about perfectly for us to put down the anchor in Liberty Bay right in front of Poulsbo and then sit down to dinner.

Saturday morning, we all had a cup of coffee and then piled into the dinghy for the run to shore. We went straight to Tizley's, a wonderful upstairs resteraunt that you might easily miss just walking down the sidewalk. We had a round of excellent bloody marys and several UK breakfast items, and than back onto the street for a shopping expedition.

We stopped at the Licorice Shrine to try some unusual ones, but unlike in the past, fate did not smile on us, and we each managed to pick something that none of us enjoyed. Then on to more shopping. We stopped into the used book store, (whose proprietress is easily bribed with chocolate) and browsed for quite a while, tho no purchases were made this time.

Jane and Kaci spent a long time in a yarn store, and when Adam and I went to discover the cause, we found that the lady in the store had them operating a yarn baller (?). We rescued them.

Finally, we ended up at the Hare and Hounds for some excellent and highly varied beers.

(Note that I have not mentioned rain yet)

We hoisted the anchor at 11:40 to meet the tide in Agate Pass, and motored against 20 kt headwinds over to Port Madison. The anchorage was unusually crowded (there were several raft-ups), and we were forced to anchor way inside, past the Seattle Yacht Club outpost. The yacht club docks too were packed and there was some kind of big commotion going on up on shore there, with a whole lot of kids involved. It was a relaxed afternoon, involving knitting and reading, and yes, some napping. I did a pork loin on the grill and Jane made her now-famous lime/zucchini/corn dish (does it qualify as a salad?) and smashed potatoes.

Capping the evening, Adam and Kaci took us thru their pictures from their amazing trip to Paris. This was a bohemian trip - with help from their friends, they stayed in a loft above a bar, in a hostel, and amazingly, in a stunning chateau, complete with a cook chef (can you say "9 course dinner, with ice cream as one of the middle courses"?). The pictures from Normandy were particularly sobering. Bomb craters still litter the area. A lot of very brave men died there, creating a beachhead for the invasion of Nazi Europe.

The next morning, while we were groggily sipping coffee, an amazing thing happened. A dinghy full of kids came right by us. And then another. And another. Soon there were 10-20 dinghies lined up between us and the yacht club docks - all full of kids clutching brightly colored creations. We all went out into the cockpit to see what was happening - it turned out that we were one end of the starting line for a sailboat race. The sailboats were the proud creations of the kids and were made from food containers - styrofoam clamshells from hamburgers, hoagies etc. plus skewers, straws, duct tape, and a bunch of other stuff. Now we knew what the commotion had been up on shore.

Suddenly, the dinghies all backed up, revealing that the boats were in the water and that the race was on!  I think you can imagine the cheering that was going on.

From the perspective of the little styrofoam craft, we weren't just the starting line - we were a huge, steep-sided island.  And as the gentle breeze blew past us, some of the craft just zipped right around us and collected in a kind of Bermuda Triangle on our leeward side, sucked into the vortex that formed there.  We heard one father explaining this to his disappointed kids as they watched their craft going nowhere. Eventually, the race was over, the winners were declared, and all the creations were picked up by the dinghies.  And a little 6-year old blonde girl whose craft was one which had been trapped behind us hollered back at me, "It's against the law!  It's against the law to suck in boats!"

How could we not be back for this event again next Father's Day?  I hope we can be the starting line again.

We finally did get rain as we came back across Puget Sound that afternoon.  But we sheltered under the bimini and enjoyed it, kind of.  The visibility was bad enough where we had to use the radar for a while.  But it let up just as we were entering the marina and were getting ready to dock, so all is well that ends well.  We celebrated the successful docking (as is the tradition aboard Eolian) with the "Banana Bread" beer that Kaci got in a specialty beer shop in Poulsbo.  It was surprisingly good - we decided it would be perfect on a Christmas morning.

All in all, I think it was a very successful weekend.  Not summer, but not exactly  "nautical" either. 



Beka said...

sounds like a fabulous weekend! And how fun are those little sailboats the kids made?!

bob said...

It was a great weekend, and the weather was way less a factor than I worried it would be. We giggled ourselves silly over the KidsCraft (I just made that up) races - I am planning to go back to the same anchorage next Father's Day!


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