Gig night

Scot Free III
Frank & Anne
Fri 11 Oct 2019 12:36
A very busy day. Moored alongside the wharf, a useful large space for folding sails - always an issue, so decided to make the most of the calm weather which was forecast.
Had to turn the boat round so wind coming over the bow, before we could remove the sails. Managed to walk her round with long lines and no engine.
First the Genoa- discovered wharf not that clean, despite recent rain! Then the dreaded main. Last year vowed we wouldn’t take it off again for a while,as such a pain, not least because A is vertically challenged and even F need A’s little step to reach the top.
The mainsail is attached to the mast by by cars, which slide up and down the mast. Each car has numerous caphead screws which need to be removed and replaced so they don’t get lost!! Once the sail is off the other half of the car needs to be unscrewed from the sail to remove the 5 long battens, a total of another 50 nuts & bolts to be unscrewed and redone. An arduous task but the weather was kind and a good job done. We have a great electric screwdriver which would have been useful but it’s in Devon.
Now have to decide what we do with them. Usually store sails with a sailmaker, who checks them out and does any minor repairs. Closest is in Halifax, a 4 hour drive. That decision still to be made.
Boat had to be walked round the corner of the wharf, as high winds forecast, and would have been blown on and the fetch would have made it very roly.
A good day’s work! Quick shower and taxi to Sydney to collect tickets and have supper before The Chieftains!
The Old Triangle Irish Alehouse was recommended as close to the venue; at 5pm already a queue and restaurant owner was doubling couples up. We sat with a couple from Massachusetts who always come to the Festival. Made for an interesting meal.
Centre 200 is Cape Breton’s main sports and entertainment stadium. Hoping to see an ice hockey match before we come home.
Had a fantastic evening. It was the Festival’s opening night, the Governor was piped in and gave a short speech and an MC made the introductions. It was billed as The Chieftains and Friends. The famous Cape Breton fiddler Ashley McIsaac was sensational, as was long time friend, Scottish piano and harp player, Phamie Gow. The Cape Breton Pipe Band gave a very slick performance, some very young faces among them. The Chieftains came on for the second half- a mixture of music and Irish dancing( from their “friends” not them!!) it was truly fantastic. Must have been at least 3000 people, probably more. Some stunning performances. Didn’t get back to the boat until midnight. So lucky to get tickets. All other main events sold out in July when they come online.