Thursday, August 13, 2009

Feeling 30 years Younger

With the school year just a long weekend away, I wanted to do something to make myself feel young, footloose and I went sailing.

I don't sail a boat made for men my age—oh, no.

I sail a Laser! Lasers are intended as a young man's first real racing sailboat. I bought this one 30 years ago, when I was a young man. Sailingwise, I just never grew up.

When I go out on it, the years drop away like magic and I feel 27 again.

I sailed over to my favorite secluded beach on the protected western shore and had a nice lunch.

When having lunch I tip my boat on its side to keep the rocks in the sand from scratching the bottom of the hull. It also keeps the sail quiet.

I was all alone. I enjoyed a sandwich, some bean salad, and a smoothie I made at home.

Then a visitor came to share my lunch spot with me.

After lunch, the sailing gods turned the wind up full blast—a steady 20 knots with more than 30 knot gusts. It blew me back into my launching beach. All the regular sailboats disappeared from the bay.

The only guy out there when I left at 4 PM was this windsurfer.


Sarah Lulu said...

I used to sail in lasers about 30 years ago!
I couldn't do it now ...but that's ok.

Pelicans are my favourite birds ..that one is the weirdest colour!

Dan Gurney said...

Cool, I didn't know you sailed, but I guess lots of people in Australia and NZ sail...they're the best sailors in the world.

steven said...

yeah dan!!! six months ago i bought a road racing bike and i've been riding it all summer. it's been a dream of mine since i was sixteen. so thirty six years later i am out inside that reality. the alone time, the sitting down beside old trees and listening to their stories, the camaraderie with other people doing something similar are features i couldn't have and wouldn't have cared about. now they are as much as anything to me.
sitting alone on a beach with a sandwich and a sailboat at your beckon. the dreamiest form of reality!! this is a beautiful post dan. steven

Bonnie, Original Art Studio said...

Aren't the sports that allow us to experience the thrill of speed, freedom and exhilaration wonderful? I know it takes incredible forearm strength, and quick response ability and agility - that must have made you feel just fantastic!! Good on you!!

Sarah Lulu said...

Well Dan I grew up on the northern beaches of Sydney and yes we all sailed and surfed ...that was all we did really ..that and play music ..that was my teenage life.

Dan Gurney said...

Hi Steven. Riding bicycles is another form or recreation and renewal that I've enjoyed over the years. How great that you've found this enjoyment. Did you ride before the racing bicycle?

Dan Gurney said...

Hi Bonnie— Yes, physical outdoor activities work best for me in terms of providing recreation and renewal. I wonder what it is that makes the years drop off so convincingly when out sailing. Is muscle memory stored differently than visual and auditory memory? Or is it that sailing is so multi-sensory? Whatever it is, it sure brings me back to the way I felt when I was younger.

Dan Gurney said...

Sarah Lulu--sailing and playing guitar all day long sounds like some form of heaven to me.

steven said...

hi dan - i rode my first bike at the age of four and have been riding ever since. i don't have a driver's license. i commute eight kilometres each way to work and it is my primary fitness activity. i haven't raced - yet!!! thanks for asking. steven

Andromeda said...

It sounds like a great day! Thanks for sharing photos.

Alden Smith said...

I identified closely with this story. Fantastic Dan, a very, very good way of spending your time. Its out of the simple pleasures and time spent alone that we are able somehow I think to refresh ourselves by giving ourselves time to reflect and to just "Be".