During my visit to the International Children’s Festival with my kids today, the breeze came up, cooling the sticky mugginess of the unusually hot September afternoon. I thought, “Oh, blessed breeze!” then, as I am wont to mutter when the leaves are aflutter, “I wish I could go sailing.”
Within a few minutes, my cell phone rang and it was Captain Tom Finn asking, “Are you sitting around waiting for me to call about going sailing with the Hobie cat?” Indeed, I was. And I did. And it was…wowowowoowowoohooooohooohwowowowoooo! Fantastico!
I enjoyed learning how the Hobie is designed and put together as I helped Tom to rig, unload, and launch it on the beach at Leesylvania State Park. The mast is made to be relatively easy to step and unstep, and the jib actually serves to hold the mast forward. Battens the depth of the sail keep the wind from spilling out as we hit speeds faster than the wind.
The wind was 13MPH from the south and increased while we were out. Tom had the Hobie cruising on 1 hull for short bursts, I was in the harness and hanging/hiking from the trapeze, and I got to take the helm for a run up the river, too. He said we would stay out only 1 hour, because 1 hour on a Hobie was worth 10 on a Catalina 22, but we stayed out more like 2 hours. I was drenched from the spray cast aboard as the blade-like hulls sliced through the water, often throwing me a face full of river. The sound of the hulls slicing through the Potomac was beautiful, and the vibration of the vessel sublime. Oh, it was like trying DSL for the first time after only having dial-up. Sailing will never be the same. I want more!