Ailsa - blog 9 Pole Dancing

Ailsa at Sea
Richard Kennedy
Wed 5 Dec 2012 14:43

Position: 15:33.348N 32:08.927


Captains log; Stardate 2012-12-05 – 14:00 UTC


Now Shelley has been looking for something to fill her time after this trip and I believe we have found the answer. Part of our down wind sailing configuration is an aluminium pole about 4 m long and 10 cms diameter fixed to the mast and which is used to hold out the forward sail. As we were deploying this pole it came out of its bracket on the mast (this a Gremlin not a Klingon). With sharp reflexes reminiscent of Mike Brearly at his best, Shelley put out her outstretched right hand and caught said pole close to the deck thus averting potential disaster. Since this incident Shelley has confidently assumed complete control of the mast – Queen of the pole!! So if Sue Ellis doesn’t have enough bank shifts in paediatric nursing perhaps a new career in pole dancing could be considered?

As for me I am consigned to bow man, crawling around on all fours at the bow struggling to tie a bowline. Any offers from the Americas’ Cup teams gratefully accepted – I think I could do a job!!!. Question for CPD points (non nautical types): What is the difference between the bow and the stern Answers on a post card to Ascension Island.

Just to add to the downwind sailing bit. We have now been through 3 configurations – pole close to the knot at the clew (chafed through knot), protection around the sheet as it goes through the jaw at the end of the pole (protection didn’t stay in place and now fixing a snatch block to the pole to run the sheet through – touch pole this will work best.

And in case you are looking our Track and wondering about my navigations skills – we aren’t really planning to visit Brazil just yet.