23 November 2009


Almost a month ago I discovered that we own a windsurfer. It was stuffed into the "pump house," a shed where the pumps for our water system are kept, collecting cob webs for what appeared to be a long time. I'm not sure exactly how we went this long time without knowing. Jessee has wanted to learn how to do it for the longest time.

Raising the Sail

It's quite a bit more difficult than you'd imagine, even if you understand the mechanics of sailing. I figured since I have the basic sailing knowledge I'd be able to at least move around on it, even if not in the most graceful way. It turns out just pulling the sail up into position is a feat - forget pointing the board in the direction you want to go. Sailboats have a rudder and tiller, so you point the boat using that, and then just trim the sail depending on the wind direction. But you can't do that with a windsurfer. The sail needs to be up, and then you pivot around the mast, pushing on the board with your feet to steer it into position. This I learned from videos on YouTube. I've been less than successful in actually doing it.

I've actually only been out on it a few times. And Jessee hasn't gotten to use it at all. Things have been busy here at the center, and I don't want to go out without motorboat support to rescue me (I'd probably get stranded somewhere downwind and not be able to get back). Then Jessee had her "Sunday Duty" day (which meant working on the usual day-off), and we had stormy Sunday (it was a full-on downpour nearly all day - we get 350 days of sunshine per year, but sometimes it gets bad), and it gets dark early (so there's not much time after work on weekdays). Then, of course, we had a pretty long period where the wind went away almost entirely (unusual for this area). Here are a few photos from that period:

Glass Calm

Without the island, you really couldn't tell where the horizon started.

Unfortunately, nobody had time to go water skiing.

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