The Tillerman asked for us co-bloggers to blogversate (coined word from EK4, is that a real word) on who was the person that inspired us to sail. Hmmmm, well since the T-man is one of the 3 who encourged/inspired me to continue this blog, when I was having doubts about doing this, I,ll share what I can.
I did not have sailors in my family. I grew up near the water but not on it. I really thought more about powerboats than sailing, since I liked to go fast and loved fast cars. Typical guy.
When I came to the West Coast and got into the Hippy/love child scene, some friends & I all went out on another friend's sailboat. It at one time belonged to the actress Jane Mansfield. It was called the San Souci. NICE sail boat! I do not recall the size, but it was at least 40-50 ft. We sailed to Catalina one weekend, and other time to Santa Barbara Island. Being a flower child there was a lot of sub stories involved with that, but that is another story...
We'll stick with sailing. Other than the almost being run down by a Oil tanker it was a great trip. I did not find out later how close we came to dying by that tanker, but again that is another story, I digress.
That was my first sailing expreience and last one for many years. However it stuck with me. It was that cool!
Years later I had a friend who owned a old classic motor yacht, I spent many days and night on there. It was a great retreat...
Still later, I would be traveling around the bay watching the sailboats thinking it would be great to be out there criusing, exploring lil coves and what not, taking pictures. The girl friend at the time agreed.
I later took a job at a printing/graphics firm. The owner was a sailor. He had me do some things with his boat photos and I heard some of the stories about the sails he went on. I thought how cool...more on him later.
A while later I came across I think was a lazer sitting for sale in someone's driveway. I thought it was a good price, reasonable for a boat. It was the right size for little adventures and learning. I took pictures and showed them to my boss. He thought it looked ok and told me a few things to lookout for. Going back later the boat was sold...which was a good thing.
Shortly after this time I started looking for a boat as a livaboard. I was thinking a houseboat, something to live on and still go places in. I looked at a few, but did not click with any, and about this time fuel cost started going up. Next I looked at cabin cruisers, nice, closer, but, still not there, then figured it would cost at couple hundred bucks to fill up one of those monsters. Hmmm time to rethink this...
My friend and adopted sister said, you should get a sailboat. She told me about some times she spent on one. Hmmmm, thought I, that maybe the ticket. Environmental good, much gas. The right one could be a liveaboard. If things got to weird here in the states I could sail away to Costa Rica. It was fun on the San Souci, yeah I like it!
So started the hunt for a sailboat. By luck after checking out boats several in my price range, which was low, came across a Person Ariel. I did not know much about saiboats, well nothing really. I did know what I wanted as far as living space, and some things to avoid. I spoke with my friend/sister's husband who had built boats and he gave me some insight. The price and the features where right on this Ariel, as was the reputation of these boats. So I moved fast and purchased it. WOW.
Now I had a boat but did not know how to sail. So I read and understood the basics. After some cleanup and reading, I got in touch with my former boss from the print/graphic shop. I asked him for a short lesson and to checkout the boat. Sure he said! He came out one day, went over the boat, and aproved. He thought I did well. We hooked up everything and went out for a sail. It was great! I was nervous at first, but he talked me through the basics and with a bit of coaching I was handling things well.
We went back to the marina and I was jazzed. I could do this!
Fom there it was solo practice, more reading, watching tapes, more practice, running aground, more pratice, a safety class, more practice... and the rest as they say is history.
So who was my inspiration, hmmm. I do not know if it was just one person, but to pick one I would say my sister, Wild Rose for putting the bug in my ear and Captn Ron who took me out on the San Souci.