A Gust of Wind
It was as surreal a Tuesday as I’ve ever experienced. It also happens to have been my best day of sailing yet. I woke up in total darkness on my friends couch in Los Angeles, CA at 4am. Due to some unfortunate time management on my part, I had missed my flight back to Portland the previous day. I have noticed in life, that events tend to conspire to get you home. My dear friends had some frequent flier miles saved up as my airline had abandoned me in my time of need. So for $5 and four hours of my time I touched down in PDX at 9:50am. In another hour I was home, showered and stepping into the car that would take me to Tomahawk Bay for an unbelievable day on the river.
By ten-after-noon we were on the water and for the first time in a month there was substantial wind. In no time at all we threw up the main sail, unfurled the head sail and despite the 3kts of current working against us we tacked back and forth across the river reaching speeds of up to 8kts. The boat lurching over on its side as we sliced through the water. There were times we were heeled over so far I thought I would slide right off the deck in into the drink.
With all the tacking there was lots to do and for the first time I glimpsed how the rigging of Aquila truly works. For a few hours I existed wholly in the moment. It was as rich a freedom as I’ve ever felt. I made some terrific mistakes as well; but they were mistakes of ambition and through them I learned more about sailing on this one windy day then I have in the last two months.
I am changing. I can feel a focus and a determination rising in me that has been dormant for a very long time. I want something now, and the bits and pieces of my life are lurching like tectonic plates to lay that thing directly before me. My worries and my demons are shrinking, losing their power…slowly. Who knew that those monsters were so fragile that all it would take to be rid of them was a gust of wind?