Tuesday, 1 September 2009

Plain Sailing Is Not Plain English

Just spent a windy week on Mardy Gras at Dartmouth Royal Regatta, helping a friend celebrate a 'significant birthday' with some former crewmates, under the name "X-Pistols". Through fair weather and foul we managed a creditable 10th out of 19 in the IRC 3 class, even with me scrambling around amongst the winches. Huge thanks for the extremely generous hospitality (Fingals is well worth a visit), patient child-minding and tutelage in all things nautical, including:

While I enjoyed the experience immensely, I confess that it's a bit of a challenge getting this post written with only a keyboard to steady the constant swaying of everything around me.

And it's somewhat of a relief to return to the ordinary usage of 'sheet', 'guy', 'kicker', 'winch', 'car', 'tack', 'gibe', 'kite', 'rail', 'head', 'boom', 'pole', 'header', 'knock', 'tail' and, last but by no means least, 'grind'.

Fortunately, I did not have to learn first hand the alternate meaning of either 'broach' or the dreaded 'Chinese gibe', which I'm assured is far worse than a taunt from a gentleman of the Far East.
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