Getting up to date

We’ve been in a strange holding-pattern slash striving-for-progress kind of time.

Monitor wheel adapter installed

While waiting for our engine parts in Onset, we tried setting up the Monitor only to find out that the Dyneema line we’d chosen slides off the blocks because it’s too thin. Rolling with the punches, we just installed the wheel adapter (what a good deal we got!) and drank more than usual (or maybe just stared at shit) through the holiday weekend. We wouldn’t have wanted to be sailing on Memorial Day weekend anyway (retch), and we were lulled into complacency by the idea that the corporatized Texas monster of a marina had ordered our engine parts, to be delivered on Tuesday.

Looking all the way up...

When we arrived by dinghy, a respectful time after they opened, to ask when to expect the delivery to arrive, the newly-back-from-(motherfucking)-Vegas parts manager shifted into the retail version of panic mode. That, of course, set off my (Dena’s) sympathy mode because, yeah, been there. She said she’d call when the person I’d talked to got back in. I called her about 1pm and she admitted both that the parts had never been ordered and that the other person had been wrong about a 1-day delivery. Incensed and now delayed by five fucking days for no fucking reason, we left on the next day’s outgoing tide. Yeah, that’s right we said it was a “Safe Harbor” marina. What ‘ev’s.

Sailing through the New Bedford hurricane dyke

New Bedford‘s Niemic Marine had the parts, except the actual broken bolt. We decided that was good enough but bellyached mightily about the harbor full of empty moorings where we would have been happy to anchor. We paid, we ate, we showered.

New Bedford pro-docks

We also got the parts and fixed the engine. And then we went sailing to the Narragansett.

And here’s where I let go of the angry self-righteousness and frustrated tension. Because that sail partook of glory…and it did in every way. That sail defined what sailing in the ocean is about for us (Dena and I James)…feeling and engaging in the respiration of the world.

We were beating – not usually a choice we make on purpose. The forecast had made me (Dena) think it would be a close reach, but hey…Cetacea balanced out on that beat like she never does downwinding with a full main, driving herself in a snake-wake of joy. If she came too far upwind, the headsails pulled her down. Too far up and the main overpowered them. It was gorgeous, hands-off, no-Monitor sailing on both tacks down Buzzards Bay, closer to Cuttyhunk than I’d expected, and past Sakonnet Point to Sachuest‘s Third Beach. Ahhhh, home just after dark!

After a perfect night at anchor...

The next day’s trip was a model of what happens when sailing takes longer than expected. We hit the Tiverton narrows almost two hours late and it was a big damn deal getting through – motoring full speed to attain 2 knots is disconcerting, though I’d checked to make sure it wouldn’t overwhelm us altogether. When it was back to sailing, we were relieved.

An old man on the sea...

The rest of the trip was a mixed bag of aggravating beating and big-wave downwinding before we were heading directly to our safe harbor of the Covid spring – Goddard State Park. Gladly, we anchored.

Cetacea, today

…at home in our world!

The end


  1. “Engaging in the respiration of the world.” I’ve never heard you say that before, and understood it immediately. It’s such a grand tiny life. I’m rejoicing that you got to have that.
    Cheers to movement!

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