29. A Taste of Sailing
We got our first taste of sailing when our insurance agent, Norm Westly, told us a group was starting a sailing club, and we could rent a small boat. Would we be interested? Absolutely! It was a 10 ft O’Day. As a prerequisite, I taught Betty to swim in the pool before we could use it. It was great fun to sail around the smooth water in the Bay inside the breakwater wall.
One of the club members had a 19 ft Mariner, and invited us to go out for a sail on a beautiful afternoon. When we rounded the end of the breakwater and moved into the gentle swells coming in off the Pacific, I looked at Betty to see her big smile — we were both hooked! There is something about the rhythmic movement of waves as a boat sails over and slides down; rocking like a cradle to calm the spirit.
The club joined some power boaters to do a boat parade along the Bay front. Our neighbor was a carpenter, and helped us build a thatched hut on our little sailboat, and a sign, “Hicks Mobile Home.”
A local builder was Hicks Homes, and the judges thought we were a commercial float, so we didn’t win. The club president gave us a bottle of champagne anyway, because everyone thought we had the best boat.
Any boaters out there who would like to share their first boating experience?