A fun-ish day at the beach

Today I woke up and looked out my window. I could see the ocean if I just sat up a little in my bed. It was a beautiful morning, the sun was out and the wind was howling. I leaped out of bed and ran to the garage to grab my 2.5 meter kite. I pulled it from a shelf and snatched the pump that went with it. I saw a carve board hanging on a hook on the wall and took that as well. Then, with my arms full, I walked the miserable 100 yards over hot asphalt and sharp pebbles to the beach. I pulled the kite out of it’s bag, unfolded it and pumped it up. Then, I meticulously laid out the strings trying to avoid tangles. Everything was hooked up and I was ready to launch the kite and hop on the carve board to go rocketing down the beach using the power of the wind.

But there was one problem, there was no more wind. The wind gods were toying with me. They teased me with the early morning breeze only to shut it off again. I sat there for hours waiting for the wind. Not even my magical wind dance worked to bring the breeze. So I packed up my kite and feeling disappointed, walked back to my house. When I got back however, the wind started to pick up again and before long, the sea was capping. I quickly grabbed my laser and towed it down to the beach.

I had a bit of trouble getting it down there, but I eventually made it. I rigged it in a record breaking four minutes, and I was ready to push it out into the surf.

I dragged it into the water and quickly hopped in. I trimmed in the sail and accelerated to get through the breaking waves. Just past the breaking waves, everything went south. The block at the end of the boom that holds outhaul snapped. The boom fell off, the sail luffed and I almost capsized to windward. A few seconds later, the rudder popped out and was dragging behind me on a string. So I had no sail, no steerage, and I was just about to drift into the breaking waves zone. I grabbed the outhaul line that had come off the boom and used it to power up the sail. I heeled the boat to windward using my body weight which caused the boat to round down rapidly. I gybed the main and headed back towards the beach using my weight to steer the boat. The boat got caught up in a wave on the way in, and I jumped off the back to avoid getting run over. I swam in and dragged the boat out of the water. I was about 300 yards away from where I started, much to far to drag the boat, so I made some temporary fixes and then pushed it back out into the ocean.

This time, nothing else broke, and I was able to safely sail back to where I launched it from. So, all in all, it was not the best day I’ve had at the beach, but it was a good learning experience, and I am looking forward to the next breezy day.

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