Well, it’s been an eventful week so far here in Miami. Kristine and I arrived with 2 days of training before OCR which is definitely late, I know. All that school just seems to get in the way of things these days.
In spite of a respectable training schedule last fall and leading up to the event, we were a bit unprepared for what Biscayne Bay had in store for us. Back home, we’d experienced a gloriously warm fall which meant that we could count on one hand the number of times we’d executed any manoeuvres while both trapezing. Then, the regatta featured 15 knots initially, building to 20 later on in the week. If only I’d known…I would have packed my water wings!!
Things were actually going remarkably well on the first day, and we landed a series of nice gybes, bear away sets, and were very happy with our speed (another competitor actually whined….why can they point so high and go so fast!?).
And then it happened. The mainsheet got stuck during a bear away and we couldn’t ease the main. This resulted in yours truly being catapulted into the bow of the boat at full planing speed and Kristine being catapulted on top of me. As coach Steve looked on in the distance, he heard an audible gasp come from all of the coach and spectator boats. Then there was just me clinging to the bow and swearing like you’ve never heard a girl swear before. It seems that my shin is what broke our fall. Ouch. In fact, it was so painful that I didn’t notice for 2 more days that I had actually sprained my ankle.
So….the next two days featured sailing in 15-17 knots, and we couldn’t figure out why I could no longer sprint across the boat without falling on my face, knees, arms…really whatever was available to break my fall. On the third day of such rediculousness, I managed to fall right on the sprained ankle and that was sort of the culminating moment. I stood on the bow of the boat trying to compose myself and admitted defeat for this event. It was not to be so.
Back at the medic tent, they took one look at me and said “Women’s skiff sailor? Thought so…we’ve seen a lot of you ladies.” In fact, my injury has a name…it’s called “hamburger foot.” And the windward mark has also been renamed “the wrecking ball” since a Canadian 49er sailor broke his leg in two places there. So really, all in all I’m not that badly off. After four days off of ankle, we’re slowly getting back into the on water training. I can last about 2 1/2 hours on it before ankle calls it quits for the day, but we’re getting lots of boat handling packed into that period. Hamburger foot is slowly shrinking, and has turned into a lovely shade of blueberry. And me? I’m reminded of my time on the Camino, and sometimes things just aren’t in the cards. Yes, we had to retire from the event. Yes we were not quite ready for prime time in breeze. But, like on my adventure on the Camino, just because you can’t walk a day or two doesn’t mean that you won’t reach Santiago. After all, sailing is more of a marathon than a sprint don’t you think?
Will post some pics this evening. We thought we had the crash on video but Steve was so busy wincing at the time that the impact didn’t make it on camera. I’ll leave that part to your imaginations.