Sunday, June 26, 2016

5 knots and the illusion of speed

Sailing has never lost its magic for me.  The glide through the water,  the response to changes in wind, the boat heeling and the rigging straining as the wind rises, easing as it falls.  All are tactile sensations.  But there is also the illusion of speed.  This is what 5 knots feels like aboard my boat, sailing today in a 10+ knot southerly  approaching Kings Point, Long Island Sound.
video

Friday, June 24, 2016

Monday, June 20, 2016

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Issuma - Anchoring in an Antarctic Gale


Richard Hudson and crew are northbound east of the Dominican Republic on a heading  that looks like a straight line to Bermuda.  His now peaceful course leads to warm reminiscence about the time spent in Antarctica.
Anchoring in the lee of Elephant Island to wait out a gale is not like stepping onto the porch to watch a summer thunderstorm.  
You don't snap selfies with your iPhone.  You worry about the holding ground.  You remember that this is the last place before the Drake Passage - five hundred miles to the next safe harbor.  You remember that this rock which juts out of the southern ocean like Yosemite's El Capitan, is where the shipwrecked crew of the Endurance spent four starving months before Capt. Shackleton was able to charter a ship that made it through the ice pack to pick you up.
Richard Hudson's matter of fact account of how Issuma held its ground is, I think, memorable in its simplicity.  Click on the link above.

Friday, June 17, 2016

A day in the yard = Barron's Boatyard - City Island


Lucky charm. Boatbuilder Pat Montalbano working on his own boat.


Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Before the Wind....Jim Lynch

http://mobile.nytimes.com/2016/05/08/books/review/before-the-wind-by-jim-lynch.html?post_id=740643540_10153867812148541#_=_

Sunday, June 12, 2016

End of an Era - Sailing the Santa Barbara Channel

We have been sailing the Santa Barbara Channel since our parents bought their house in 1973.  My first sail I rented a Force 5 - a hot little 15 footer which I sailed out of the harbor into a pretty decent swell.  After that I tried a sailing surfboard. Even at 30 I didn't have the strength for that.
Then Dad bought the Bali Hai - a 26 foot Columbia.  When that was sold we sailed Nancy's Columbia 22.  When that was sold we started renting at Santa Barbara Sailing Center.  
Here Nancy and I are sailing a Catalina 23 on a typically gentle Santa Barbara afternoon - approaching the bluffs of Shoreline Park where my mother studied for the California bar exam under the shade of its trees.  End of an era. - gwc

2016


2016
Father's Day 2013 - Fordham men

Helmsman

Sunday, June 5, 2016

Santa Barbara and Anacapa - Remembering Dad, Mom and Kathryn

Four C's
Molly, Mindy, Taisy
dock at Anacapa
Nan
Peter & Norma

Anacapa arch

Anacapa Lighthouse

Poddies
Karen Trautfield


Dolphin pod



Monday, May 30, 2016

Michael Cunnion (1945 - 1966)

Mike Cunnion was the star quarterback at Mt. St. Michael's in Mt. Vernon, NY.  When he  went to Holy Cross on a football scholarship we lived on the same floor and were friends.  But then and there even a prime athlete could flunk out.  Mike did.  He joined the Marines and went to Vietnam.  With fourteen others he went down in a helicopter near the DMZ (the truce line between south and north Vietnam).  Mt. St. Michael, pictured below, memorialized Mike.
When I travel to D.C. I go to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial to remember Mike and two other classmates - Bob Donovan, and Jack Martin who also perished in the war.
As President Obama's visit reminds us we lost 58,000.  The Vietnamese 1 million.  They too should be mourned. - gwc