A short passage to Dartmouth

7 – A brief moment on the passage home

I had plenty of time to reflect on single-handed sailing during the week away. I passed many yachts, some with large sociable crews, more with large racing crews. They are the norm. So what about single-handed? Is it about sailing from A to B with no crew or is it something else – sailing for the sake of it, a little of which can be illustrated on camera but most of which remains in the mind of the sailor? The following records a few moments on the passage back from Dartmouth to Plymouth on that Friday evening.


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A short passage to Dartmouth

4 – A mooring in Salcombe

Ever curious, I have been asking myself about single-handed sailing and why I enjoy it so much. The fact that I am reflecting on this at all is a clue in itself. I will enlarge on this later.

What brought this on was the image below of a diminutive Blue Mistress moored among a sociable fleet of smart yachts in Salcombe and the acknowledgement that this is not a suitable haunt for the sailor who seeks solitude.

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A short passage to Dartmouth

3 – A few days away – to Dartmouth and back

I’ve been away for a while – first a week on the boat then a trip to London for a ’45-year’ reunion. In the latter we met up as fellow students, still recognisable as the young people we used to be – (well . . . some more, some less)! It was fun. But the London of today is not the same as it was 45 years ago. Our dental hospital was in Leicester Square and we could walk across the square without having to push through crowds of tourists. Not that I wish to turn the clock back – tourists are good for the capital, but I want to record this enormous increase in population and to contrast it with the single-handed sailing I enjoyed a few days before.

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Folksong: the answer – a plank of wood

I had spent the afternoon kneeling on the cabin sole, cleaning first the bilge then the lockers and getting frustrated because every time I tried to put something down, it either fell into the bilge, or into the open locker. I wished for a working surface to put tools on and to hammer/screw/cut on, one that would be easy to manage in a relatively restricted space. Too wide and it would be difficult to stow, too narrow and I wouldn’t be able to attach a vice, too short and it wouldn’t fit across the cockpit/cabin sole.

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