Sailing with Newlyweds…

Fabian and Sofía had arrived in Canada a couple of weeks before, just to be married… and marry they did, in the rain, on July 18, under the branches of a huge Oaktree in the Ottawa Arboretum. Two days before, they had taken into the air… Fabian, who is an accomplished pilot in his native Switzerland, had arrange to pilot one of the airplanes at Rockcliffe Flying Club, and for one hour himself, Sofía and their niece Anya, flew all over Ottawa in a Cessna 172S (Skyhawk C-GKSK).

After their marriage, they expressed the wish to complete an Air-Earth-Water journey by going sailing in Lac Deschênes. The only possible available time for this activity was on July 20 early in the afternoon. However, conditions were borderline with covered skies, gusty winds, and the possibility of storms. So, with some dark cumulus still looming above and some breaks towards the Northwest, Sassy decided to raise to the occasion. Around 2:00pm, with four eager sailors onboard, she undocked and slowly motored out of the marina. At the KN8 marker she turned upwind to hoist sail in steady southern winds. The pin that holds all the lines against the mast was still in place… but Sofía sprang to the mast and swiftly removed it. Then, the sail was deftly hoisted by Fabian mastering together the main and the gaff halyards. Later, he would ask to be reminded to send back to Canada some of those red-cloth labels used in airplanes indicating “Remove before flight”… Then Sassy bore away to starboard and sailed port-tack / beam-reach for about an hour.

After reaching the middle of the lake, as new clouds gathered above, she tacked 180 degrees and headed back retracing her previous course.

Before reaching the KN8 marker the auxiliary was restarted and she turned again upwind to dowse sail. She re-enter port at around 4:00pm. With such an able crew, Sassy made a perfect docking manoeuvre and we all gathered at the clubhouse restaurant to celebrate the mini-sailing adventure with cold drinks and an early dinner… The newlywed had mastered three of the four original elements: Air, Earth, and Water. As for the fourth — Fire — their love for each other will more than provide…