Zensekai (zen's world under sail)

The sailing adventures of s/v Zen and crew

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Memorial Weekend Part II

Ok where was I ...

Oh yeah,
The sky was clear, comfortably cool, a stiff breeze blew from the SW.
There I was less than 20 mintues into the "zone" my sails where full but I was not moving...

Hmmm I guess you want to know what is the "zone", Patience, let's back up again to fill this in...

Now Sun morning 5:00 am, I am up and sleepy, but getting ready for s/v zen's big adventure. Everything was prepared on Sat. morning so all I had to do was take off the covers and go. Which is what I did. Wanting to make some time and also check the engine I motor for the first leg of the trip. Down to what I call the frontier, Cartinez bridge,

beyond that is "the zone", "San Pablo Bay" Which is just pass Glen Cove were our last trip went as far as. Past the bridge I had yet to venture on s/v zen. On the last boat. The first time into this area, there was no wind going and way too much coming back, as in Near gale winds!!! My first mate got sick from the 2 stoke engine fumes. It was horrible! Several large tug boat with their HUGE wakes were a drag on a little boat grrrrrrrrrr!! The next time into the "zone". I was fighting the current and big head winds trying to get to Alameda before dark. With a late start already, I did not make it. I figured screw you guys I'm going home ( heheh I like south park), so turned around and went back.

So here I am again into the zone with s/v zen. It is looking good so far I raise the sails and catch a good wind, I'm off on a close haul making good time. The chart says no boats with under 2o ft draft into the channel dregged area, so I give it a wide space, too wide! Next thing I am stopped, sails full I'm not moving!! DOH!

I try a couple to do things to get free nothing works. I drop anchor and prepare to wait. I thinking, ok, boat named Zen, with Captn Zen, I'll just center myself, and chill, enjoy the moment, No use beating myself up about it, it could be worst.
Only a couple of hours or so the tide will come back. I prepare to wait.

I read for a while about 1 hour later, I feel the boat is shifting, I check the tiller it is free I check my position, yup I have moved. I thought the wind changed becasue the sail shifted, but no I had shifted. I bring up the anchor and fire up the motor. So I did get to practice anchoring, which was something I needed to do. I guess the Universe thought so as well. I also find, one of two batteries will not crank enough to spin the engine. I switch to both it fires up and fiddle with getting the anchor free and slowly pull out, Alright I'm on the way again!!

Now I think screw the chart I'm staying in the lanes or at least close to it. I see other boats right in the center, so I do too. Now though I'm paranoid and every wave motion that feels like I am slowing I get that feeling in my gut. Soon I talk myself through it.

Not much wind though now, the morning breeze has gone. Grrr bummer. I fire up the iron sail and make a uneventful trip to the channel marker for San Rafael. I dodge a big tanker, and see a cool sail boat in the distance

I also get a good sight of
San Francisco and Oakland along with with the Oakland Bay bridge off in the distance at the Richmond bridge.

I was concerned the motor would die, but it ran sweet all the way. Changing the coil and stuff worked. I check VERY carfully the instructions and follow the GPS to the mark and turn off. The GPS was working great. I also keep my eyes on careful watch as well. I stay dead on course staying close to the markers. Other than a couple of the rich folks in the Gas hogs speeding by with big wakes, (what is up with them, no manners, no consideration, good grief this is a narrow channel)

the trip to the marina goes smooth I find my slip and dock smoothly. Yeah, Allah be praised!

Alright, thank God! Made it! I call a couple of people I know. They are suprised I made it so fast. The whole trip took 5 .5 hours including going aground.

One call is to the couple with the same boat as s/v Zen. Don comes over with his wife and we go to an early dinner. Our first time meeting, nice folks. We go to an early dinner in town next to a canal. Nice visit.

Next my longest Cal friend, adopted sister, and distance cousin and her husband. He lived in Hong Kong whilst building boats they come down to see s/v Zen the first visit. She use to have a 40 some foot Wooden Motor Yacht, but says she will never do that again. They bring goodies, three all natural custard eclairs. Another nice chat and hang out and they are off back to the brothers party and BBQ/wine & cheese, Marine style bash. I settle in for the evening and write a draft of this on the old toshiba laptop. Now for some reading and then to bed for the trip home.

Which I will finish telling tomorrow, as I have stuff to do.

to be con't...

Zen N Zen ( anyone notice how my colors match s/v Zen?)


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