Because She and I Still Can


On September 6, after four hectic days (one for cleaning the garage and making room for the boat stuff, another emptying the boat an bringing all the gear home, a third removing the sail and bringing the dinghy to the garage, and a fourth to get the trailer, haul the boat out of the water, remove the motor from the bracket, retrieve the fenders at the dock, tow the boat to the yard and snug her under her tarps) Sassy Gaffer was once again on the dry, ready for the Winter. Normally she would have stayed afloat for another one or two months, but a pending trip down South forced an earlier date for a last visit to the ramp.

In spite of the many things that could have gone wrong, only one did: while disassembling the hinge at the base of mast (to remove the slugs at the luff from the track and fold the sail away), the top of the mast slept forward from the gallows bracket braking beyond repair the lens of the anchor light. The original lens was an Aqua Sail Series 25 Standard all-around lens and a replacement was quickly found at the local chandlery. While the brand, the model and the size were a perfect match to the original, the position of the notches for anchoring the lens to the base of the light did not (go figure!). So next season the base of the light will also have to be replaced.

This season, Sassy was launched on May 11 but did not get her sail until May 20. She was provisioned on the 26 and on May 27 she had the first sail up-river. One week later, on June 3rd and 4th was the second sail upriver for a first overnight and “portable afloat” at “Horaceville”. Two weeks later, on June 17 and 18, was her third sail upriver and second overnight, this time on the lee of Aylmer Island. This trip included the activation of the island (CIA ON-295) as well as its historic lighthouse (ARLHS CAN-897). The fourth sail was on July 14 sailing together with “Bay Hen” in the context of the Small Boat Messabout. August 19 and 20 was the fifth sail up-river, to Pinhey Point, for a third overnight at the anchor and an initial deployment (vertical) of the W3EDP Jr. antenna. Two days later, at the marina, the same antenna was successfully tried as an inverted “V” using the spars of the boat. And on August 27 took place the sixth and last sail of the season, to be “self-marooned” in Aylmer Island and participate in the W/VE Island QSO Party.

Hence, after 119 days afloat, “Sassy” was away from her dock for nine days, with three full nights spent swinging at the anchor.

– Why?, you may ask…
– Because she and I still can…

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