Sunday, July 05, 2009

Sunday School

I grew up an Anglican, a good Protestant boy. So today, I'm going back and sharing communion. The Mainsail team are attending Sunday School this afternoon. It has been good fun for the team this season, but mixed with a little hell as we have remained solidly way, way down in the standings. The bottom, the lowest depths, DFL. Yes, our confessions will need to be complete as we have completed myriad sins on the racecourse, recently they have been related to spinnaker handling. The last race saw our chute wrapped around the hull, between the keel and rudder. Dear God, we did it at the leeward mark, right in front of the race committee. That's okay, because such occasions of humiliation are when you see the Light. There have been issues with launches and douses, running rigging, but also bad tactics, the occasional bad start, even an OCS. Hey, we are having fun though, really! I do mean that. But now, it is time to go back to the gospel, boat-handling 101, and pay heed.

Despite being Sunday, perhaps I should really call it boot camp. We're going to drill, drill, and drill on our spinnaker handling basics today. I had the pleasure of recently driving to a regatta in Ottawa, with a sailor who impressed me a great deal, and he made one point that stayed with me. Essentially, know your basics and procedures inside and out. Every move should be automatic, quick, and easy. If the big goofs are eliminated, and the ease and speed of execution is there, then you can go to the next level.

I'm still figuring out the helm and feel of the Shark. Our mid-crew is newish to that post, having done foredeck previously, and our two alternates in the third position are new to the sport. Obviously naive, but were we also foolish asking Hades for the instant wealth, immediate gratification? So, what kind of silly spunk did we have trying to keep up with the big boys and girls? The right kind! That is because, now I know what all good Protestants know. The clear air to salvation is found in hard work and giving to others. Suffering is good, part of the process to enlightenment. Time to kick in that protestant work ethic. For us, it is back to basics. I'm not a good teacher, but here comes Sunday School. Faith will bring lofty winds that will come down upon us, lift us to our mark, and send us through the gates long before all those other atheists. It will take time too, but with confessions behind me, some faith in the process, this humble, bumbling shephard, whoops, skipper, is back on the right path.