November 1, 2019: We return to home port

We rose early on Friday, Nov. 1, to begin our four-hour journey back to Braesail’s home port. We motored over lightly-ruffled seas on another superb day after a misty, rosy morning during which I enjoyed a glimpse of the 9 am ferry departing from the Friday Harbor Marina and being transmuted by the early morning sun into a ship of shining gold. Our autopilot mysteriously came back to life (an All Saints Day gift, perhaps?) as we departed the guest dock, and that made helm duty much easier for Walt (whose back pain had lessened) and me as we took turns driving the boat. I saw some wide-eyed seals as we left the marina, and was treated to outstanding views of Mt. Baker to the east as we traveled.

anacortes marina
Anacortes Marina—about 15 years ago. Braesail lives near the end of the left side of the left-most dock.

We pulled the boat into her refurbished slip in the Anacortes Marina at a little after 1 pm, and moved immediately into the task of lowering and removing her three sails in preparation for rigging replacement that will begin Nov. 11. I struggled mightily as we tried to fold the huge and heavy mainsail and stuff it into its bag, and was relieved when one of Anacortes Yacht Charters’ staff happened by and volunteered to assist with the not-quite-so-huge yankee jib! Walt drove the mainsail to the offices of the sailmaker who will replace its worn UV strip, while I began off-loading food and gear. I hauled two very heavy shore-cart-loads of our stuff (15 bags, some large and weighty, others smaller and lighter) down the block-long dock and up the ramp to the shore and loaded everything into the Prius. After some difficulties I encountered with the handling of Braesail’s dock lines after Walt had turned her around and backed her into our slip to make the next exit easier (I must have been feeling more tired than I thought I was), we headed for Everett, stopping on the way for a hearty BBQ dinner at a very popular, crowded brew pub.

I now have many loads of laundry to deal with, but am thankful to be back home safely after a superb October boating excursion. I hope we might be able to go out again next fall, when few other boats are out, marinas are less busy and crowded, the autumn light and leaf colors are spectacular, the air is fresh and bracing, the winds are frisky, and the sunsets are breathtaking. Want to join us?

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