Jen was occupied with obligations in the dirt world (as was Andrea), and sailing is tough without my mate. To make matters worse, Tim was unsure if he’d be up for the rigors of launching and landing the boat, having just injured himself in an unfortunate Slip ‘n Slide accident. We decided to give it a shot though.
To make things simpler, and to work within a slightly compressed timeline of potentially having to leave early to meet the ladies, we didn’t bother to rig the mainsail. The plan was to do a cursory jellyfish check of Berkeley Island and just anchor there if it was clear, or to go over to Governor’s Mansion as a fallback. There were no jellyfish to be seen, but the anchorage was rather crowded and the cove was pretty rough. I wasn’t certain if the rollers were simply a matter of the wind direction (despite the relatively light winds there was a lot of fetch coming from Island Beach) or if it was boat wakes. Either way, there was a Catalina 22 leaving as we rounded the grassy point that was getting thrown about pretty good, and I was not eager to replace him.
We decided to motor over to Governor’s, which would be more protected, but would mean that we’d have to get into the narrow entrance without the chart plotter in Jen’s telephone. It looked as if just about every other sailboat on the bay was out and sailing and it felt a little weird motoring since that’s not Fortuitous’ usual style, but for a short jaunt without Jen to tend to the sails and keel, eh—it was the right call. We conferred with the paper charts and like all the great navigators, made our best guess as to how to get in there. With the keel up, it probably wasn’t all that critical. As we approached, a large powerboat spinning radar cruised out along our course, so I felt more confident that I had interpreted the chart correctly and we drove in without issue.
Anchoring was also not an issue, and we quickly commenced with the hoagies and America’s best beer, as judged by the World’s Columbian Exposition of 1893. That was followed immediately by swimming and smooth music, and then more beer. We even got a thumbs up from a passing trimaran for our dedication to treading water while holding a beer.
We did get the jib out on the way back and sailed a leisurely broad reach straight to the entrance to Trixie’s cove. Putting the boat away went well for it being Tim’s first time. I probably should have switched jobs with him, but I was stuck in the routine and had him pull the boat forward while I waited at the winch as Jen and I usually do.
So we weren’t exactly giving Knox-Johnston knot-tying lessons, but for a shorthanded booze cruise, we had an excellent day.