Quiet Day, relatively.

Where Next?
Bob Williams
Mon 17 Sep 2007 01:34
Noon Position: 41 53.2 N 068 57.1 W
Course: 255 Speed: 4 knots
Wind: North 10 knots
Distance sailed: 93 miles
Ave Speed: 4 knots

Last night, sure enough the wind freshened on the other side of the trough
as it passed through, and by midnight I was down to 80% jib and a double
reefed mainsail. I had a bit of a fright just before midnight when all of a
sudden the jib started flogging violently, it was obvious that the sheet was
no longer attached to the sail and I initially thought that the clew had
parted company with the sail. I promptly furled the sail and thought about
what to do. If the clew was no longer attached to the sail the first thing
I had to do was to find a way of stopping the jib from becoming unfurled on
the furler. I sat a little numbed considering the consequences of this
latest development and looking at the jib sheet trailing in the water
thought I had best bring it in, which I subsequently did and doing so -
dragging this out, a drum roll please - I noticed that the whipping on the
end of the line was still in tact and there was no clew ring attached to the
line. "That's strange," I thought, and inspecting the sail with a
flashlight I discovered that the jib was still in tact and that the lazy
sheet was still attached. Hooray! The jib sheet had somehow come undone,
now this has never happened to me before, simply a piece of poor seamanship
in the knot not being tied very well. Well maybe I was a little
disappointed in myself but I certainly was not disappointed about how much
simpler this made things. Now how do I go about reattaching the port jib
sheet I ask myself. I think of a number of possibilities but I must be a
bit tired for it takes me a while to work out the simple expediency of just
re-reeving the starboard jib sheet onto the port side and resetting the
sail. Once I worked this out it took me all of five minutes to have the
sail set and drawing again.
The winds have eased quite a bit during the day, we are making a useful 4
knots and the seas are calm, so all is well for now. Tomorrow I should be
off Cape Cod and back in US waters.

Today's definitions:

Parts of a sail:
Clew - the rear corner, the part you attach the sheet to.
Tack - the lower front corner, the bit that goes through the eye of the wind
first when you tack.
Head - the top corner.
Sheet - always a line, not a sail, attached to the clew to control the set
of the sail.