Lee Martin - Harvey, Texas - USA
Cut and Run
Once again, we've spent a miserable day on the water.
Overpowered, overwaved and soaking wet. It doesn't
have to be this way, but for me the decision to turn
back or not start, is a hard one to make. My primary
mistake comes, when, after listening to N.O.A.A. and
Katie tell me it's too rough, too windy and too rainy,
I make the optimistic appraisal that the winds won't
be as strong, the waves won't be as high, "Hey,
the rain is slowing down already. That's why we call
those damn computer voices '"don't N.O.A.A."',
Right"? Logic follows that we can always turn
back or quit early and head in. Katie usually maintains
that we've got two anchors in, good books and a cheap
restaurant in town, why would we go out in "iffy
weather"? It's simple to follow---I'm bored and
there's new ground to cover. My actions are made to
that criteria, not the one that begins "common
The trouble starts after pulling the hooks and heading
out. Once past the seawall and the discovery that
the winds and waves are too much for our boat and
the rain has increased, the decision must be made
to turn back or pony on. While Katie is usually early
to admit my mistake and attempt to correct it, I never
am! I maintain my choice to the point that we're taking
solid water in the cockpit and Katie has retired below
for life jackets and survival kit!! The situations
I have gotten us in with this attitude are ridiculous.
The fact is I do it time and time again. It seems
impossible for me to say "let's just sit it out.
Conditions will improve and we've only lost time,
not our lives or our boat." But that is the attitude
required for successful voyaging.
Next time you're stir crazy in the confines of your
20 footer after 3 days of rain, keep in mind this
admission of ineptitude. Remind yourself you're above
all that, grab your weathers and oars and head for
the local library to spend the day. Beats replacing
broken gear and heads, hands down.
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