Invariably some mixed feelings on day one. Said goodbye to Mum on the pontoon before catching One-Tooth-Sid’s river taxi to the boat.
Conny, Lorraine and I were joined on deck with our respective family members for a farewell beer…with Lorraine’s dad and my dad having a good snoop around Ramprasad to ensure the vessel is ship-shape!
After saying goodbye we pretty much set sail straightaway for our first destination, The Isle of Wight. Sailing for the first time in a while was sensory overload. Forgot every single knot I’d ever learned (all three of them) and realised that my shower-proof mac doesn’t cut the mustard in the slashing rain.
Then there’s down-below. For the uneducated going ‘down-below’ on a yacht whilst at sea is not only difficult because of the way the boat rocks, but is a sure-fire way of getting sea-sick. The best way to get rid of sea-sickness is to get up on deck and look at the horizon. Why then did I volunteer to make some tea and toast in the galley within an hour of setting sail? You’re supposed to wait a couple of days before getting your sea-legs!
Actually, I did alright. Got a bit dizzy but I saw it through and managed to pull it off, even if it did take approx. 46 mins to make each slice of toast. In case it wasn’t obvious cooking on a boat is hard work, especially when everything is tilting at 30 degrees.
On our way to the Isle of Wight we did some trolling, which is hanging a fishing line out the back of the boat whilst moving along. Low and behold we caught two mackerel, which I unhooked and killed, whilst Sam gutted them and Conny filleted. When docked at Cowes I knocked up a mackerel and chick pea curry, a variation on Zoe’s mushroom and chick-pea recipe.
Whilst the food went down well I think there was still a lot of first day nerves, at least for me. Had I made the right decision to leave the comfortable surroundings of home? What’s Sam really like when it’s blowing a force 7 in 20ft waves? Would I get on with Conny and Lorraine? Is sailing for me? After all I’ve only ever done this once before and that was with people I knew. These and many more questions continued to race through my mind when we got the river taxi to Cowes and rounded our first day off with a walk down the promenade and a couple of beers.