Monday, July 17, 2006

Once Again, It's Been A While

Unfortunately, I've been busy with work and, well, partying on weekends with ma peeps in various harbors on the west end of the Long Island Sound. Other than normal maintenance I haven't done anything really spectacular with the boat.

This time of the summer is horrible -it's hot, humid, mostly windless. Typically, if you're going somewhere, you're motoring. There is nothing remotely pleasant about this except in the afternoon sometimes there pops up an afternoon wind my aunt used to call 'The Mooring Breeze'.

Bedouin VII Launch at Nevins in City Island 1929 photo suppied by Bill CAnnell, Cannell Classic YachtsMy aunt and uncle owned a converted 8 metre yawl that was out of Port Washington. The name of the boat was Bedouin VIII and she was built in 1929, designed by Charles D. Mower and built on City Island, NY by Henry B. Nevins. Her sail number is KC-12. Apparently before that she was named 'Lazy Eight' and 'Arroway'.

It's actually cool how she got the name Bedouin VIII. My mother's family had boats all their lives. My grandfather's last boat was Bedouin V, and my aunt's previous boat was Bedouin VI. When they purchased Lazy Eight, the skipped VII because it was an 8 Meter, after all. There was some pressure for me to name my first boat, Mudlark, to Bedouin VII. I never did, though.


Anyway, she was or is a magnificent boat built of mahogany and oak with bronze knees. She drew 7 feet and carried 7 - 1/2 tons ballast in her keel. She's 46 feet long and has a beam of around 8 feet. She carries an unimaginable amount of sail - I think something near 2000 ft. sq. Her mast is 60' tall.

She was fast and I remember some truly amazing times aboard her.

One of the fun things she carried (other than a tupperware container full of Oreo cookies) was a Dyer sailing dinghy that my aunt and uncle would allow me to zip all over Port Washington. Hmmm, some of the fondest memories of my youth...

Anyway, my aunt absolutely abhorred the engine. She'd sail up to the mooring and the boat would stop right at the pickup bouy. My uncle would pick it up and calmly throw a loop over a cleat then walk back to the mast to drop the mainsail. This performance always went without a hitch. I think I saw them make a second try only once in the years they had me aboard. There was no shouting, no frantic running about and waving arms and other things. It was simple and graceful and I've wanted to be able to do that all my life. Imagine it.

Now this is easy to do in light winds. Less easy in stronger ones. And they'd always come up around 5 pm. Hence the mooring winds.

Well, that was a sort of round about way of getting to the point.

Now I'm nearing my two week cruise - I expect it to start on the weekend of the finish of the Around Long Island Race. Depending on who comes with me or no one I'll go somewhere interesting or somewhere comfortable. Or both.

As usual, I'll keep you posted. I'm thinking of getting a digital access card from Verizon so I can keep up with this blog and I guess my clients, too.

There is a better than even chance I'll see you on the water!

6 comments:

Tillerman said...

Hope you can keep up your blog on the cruise. Look forward to reading all about it.

Zen said...

As do I Captn

8msulaire said...

Great images, good on your Aunt and Uncle! No yelling, wow. Would love to hear more. We own and are restoring an 8 meter that was built in Scotland in 1929 though she was brought to Marblehead in 1932. She's had many names, but is now and was originally Sulaire.

According to the 8 meter register (2001) Bedouin VIII resides in the Bahamas. Still sailing after all these years.
Happy sailing.
8msulaire

Cap't Bob said...

Well, Tillerman and Zen, I tried. I fought with Verizon for 5 hours trying to get my phone to be a modem. Feh. No luck. But expect an update tomorrow!

8M Sulaire, thanks for the info - I hope you have as much fun with your 8M as I know my Aunt and Uncle did. They're magnificent boats! And thanks for the info. If you're ever in the Bahamas, and have a chance to talk to the owners, say Hi! for me!

C. Clemson said...

It's been a few years since any post was put against this... but...
A long time ago my family had an 8 meter named arroway. It sailed on Lake Muskoka in Canada, so it would have had a KC sail number. I'm trying to figure out what happened to it.

Thanks,
Conrad.

Nancy said...

That was my father's boat! I spent many hours sailing with dad and Shirley, mixing drinks for them, manning the sails, often being the lucky one to stand on the bow and pick up the mooring as we sailed in. I was always terrified of missing it on the first go round! I sure do miss those days. I am now in land-locked Kansas City. It was exciting to read your post about the Bedouis VIII. What a beautiful boat she was.