Going to the Dark Side
there is that wonderful moment on a sailboat when you clear the marina, put up the sails and turn the engine off. Suddenly the world is silent except for the whish of the wind and waves and the creak of the rigging. In that moment, I have always felt an overwhelming sense of peace. It is a wonderful feeling to go out on the bow, hold the mast, look up, and sense the power the wind in the mainsail silently moving the boat.
On a sailboat there is the joy of being on the sunny deck with a book while Bill is at the helm. (On the other hand, there is also the experience of being huddled under the dodger as a cold drizzle falls and a raw wind blows. Or as no wind blows and we end up motoring anyway.)
On a cruiser, however, cold rainy weather is no impediment. I can sit in the warm. light-filled cabin and eat ice cream as we cruise while the rain lashes the windows. There is so much more space in a cruiser! Now, I personally have always loved being physically close to Bill, but it is nice to be able to spread out a little bit while we are at anchor. I like to curl up with book and snack on the bench in the helm; he likes to spread out at the table downstairs. It’s nice for family too. When our daughters and their families came up for Thanksgiving, there was plenty of room for all ten of us in the Mora when we went out for an afternoon cruise.
He says: The mechanical aspects of a powerboat are about as different as sailing is to motoring. I mean - four GALLONS of oil? That must be a misprint, surely it is four quarts. The Nordic Tug came with some nice features that we did not have on the sailboats we have owned. No more cranking that winch handle to bring up the anchor, or hand over hand as on the Hunter sailboat we were partners in. Auto pilot is great for being able to pick up the binoculars to look at something in the distance. And the generator is nice to have to heat up some water after you’ve been away from a marina for a few days.
There is a saying that on a sailboat the journey is the destination, but with the power boat you are freer in setting your course as opposed to having the wind largely determining the course. I enjoy exploring a little closer to shore to sightsee with the Tug.
She adds: We named our new boat after the historic Mora, William the Conqueror’s flagship when he invaded England in 1066. The boat was a gift to him from his wife Matilda; the name is said to be an anagram of Amor. Sweet, huh? And an appropriate name for a boat owned by a modern day William and his wife. The photo next to the name on the boat is of William himself from the Bayeux Tapestry which was woven under the direction of Queen Matilda to describe and commemorate the conquest.
Ice Cream time for Susanna and Bill Epler.
4/23/2019 10:24:45 am
This is a fun read, especially since we've gone through the same transition from sailboats to a power boat. I still have cockpit nostalgia!
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Fidalgo Yacht Club is best known as a cruising club, whose members share a passion for boats, the Pacific Northwest inland waterways, and a sense of comradery. Safe boat handling is a priority. Summer will find us on the water from Anacortes to SE Alaska. Wintertime we gather together in our clubhouse to gather knowledge from dinner speakers and educational “bar chats”. We cruise and learn together and welcome new members whether a seasoned mariner or first-time boater.