simply enough. Herman decided to put our sailboat in early
enough this year so that we could get every good sailing day
possible out of the season. By early, Im talking the
last week of April. Which also happened to be when the ice
finally left the lake. Hermans boat was one of the first
put out on the lake, and certainly the first sailboat.
had taken the boat out a few times, but I had chosen not to
go as it seemed a bit cool out there to me. So I think it
was probably the second week of May when Herman got up after
an especially stormy night just to check on the boat. He had
left the sails furled on the boom (see how much sailing jargon
I know!), because he wanted to make sure the sails werent
worked loose and flapping in the wind.
his surprise when he found sails, boom and mast all in the
water beside the boat. The force of the wind the night before
had in fact been so intense that the mast mounts were ripped
out from the deck. In order to salvage it as best he could,
Herman had to scamper out in his bathing suit and anorak to
unfasten the mast, boom, sails and shrouds to prevent further
loss or wreckage.
he came in he took a hot shower to thaw his legs (the lake
water being not much above freezing this early in the year).
It was after the shower that he told me about this, since
this all happened about 6AM and I was still asleep. I asked
him what boat repair place he would take it to, and he replied
he wanted to look things over first as this could be a very
after looking things over and explaining to me that the mast
was really held up more by the shrouds (the guy wire things
that hold the mast in place like telephone pole guy wires)
than the mast mounts. Therefore, although the mast foot plate
had pulled out of its slot, (and Herman found it in the water
after careful search) only some bolts and one guy wire spring
clip needed to be replaced.
this added some challenges in that the local store here called
"Grooms" after the owners, has a great hardware
department, but since the original bolts were "lost at
sea" some estimates and measurements had to be made to
see what might adapt for the purpose. Lo and behold, $1.49
worth of hardware and Jerry Grooms offer to check his
stock at home when just the right size spring clip couldnt
be found got Herman back on the water again with only a couple
of hours repair time.
Herman has yet another new profession added to his resume.
Spira, a native of Cleveland who pursued an acting career
in NYC and Los Angeles, now pursues free lance writing from
Caroga Lake here in Fulton County. Previous columns may be
accessed at her web site www.kathrynskorner.com"