RAF Waddington Pipes and Drums 43rd Sail of 2019

This winter in Rhode Island, we are enjoying the unexpected luxury of having two RS Aero frostbite fleets. There is racing all winter at Bristol YC on Saturday afternoons, and racing with a break in January and February at Barrington YC on Sunday afternoons.

That gives all of us local RS Aero sailors with a streak of masochism (which basically means all of us – we do live in New England after all) a number of options…

1. Sign up for one or the other.
2. Sign up for both so you have a fall-back plan if sailing is cancelled because of bad weather the day of the weekend your favorite club is sailing
3. Sign up for both so you can sail at the one which has the best winds each weekend.
4. Sign up for both and sail both days every weekend.

I have signed up for both. Time will tell if I’m really a 2, a 3, or a 4.

On the first weekend of November, Tillerson and I sailed at Barrington. It was an interesting afternoon topped off by the last race being a long sail back to the club up the Warren River battling an outgoing tide in a dying wind. Apparently this is a regular fun feature of racing at Barrington although one has to assume that 50% of the time the tide will be in our favor, won’t it? Anyway Tillerson won the day and I didn’t break anything on myself or the boat, so that was all good.

This weekend we decided to go to Bristol. It was a 9 rig kind of day – although by the end of the afternoon in the 7th and 8th races I was beginning to wish I was in a 7 rig, but I stuck it out to the bitter end and didn’t break anything on myself or the boat (in spite of being rammed from behind by a sailor who wasn’t looking where he was going between races. Good job these RS Aeros are tough little boats.) I even beat Tillerson in a couple of races, which was even better than good.

After the racing the very nice man who organizes stuff awarded beer glasses so I now have another beer glass for my collection for coming third on the day. 

That evening Tillerson phoned us and I overheard him telling his mother that he had been really slow downwind for some reason, so I had to correct him and tell him he was really fast downwind; it’s just that I was even faster. Ha ha! But it was true. I was usually making up ground on the competition downwind using some of the super secret tricks I have learned over the years from the likes of Peter Barton and Marc Jacobi. Well, that’s my story and I’m sticking to it. Now I just need to figure out how to be faster upwind.

This was my 43rd day of sailing this year which is pretty pathetic considering I once dreamed of sailing 100 days in a calendar year. Many of the male readers of my old blog used to get very excited about my 43rd sail of the year for some reason. Hope they like the new picture I found for the number 43. A free demo sail in an RS Aero to the first reader to explain the photo’s significance.

Thank you to the imaginary sponsors of my 43rd day of sailing in 2019, the Royal Air Force Waddington Pipes and Drums Band, proudly piping and drumming and wearing the RAF tartan since 1967.


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