A few weeks ago, a co-worker said he admired that I was fearless and willing to try anything. Not true. I am scared of heights. I am scared of waves. I am scared of swells in the ocean. I am scared about going fast. I am scared about hurting my ankle or knee again. I am scared about looing stupid. And on Sunday, I had a sailing lesson that challenged many of those fears. Yes, another sailing lesson, well beyond my comfort zone.
Lou was my instructor for this lesson. Unlike Bob who only had lessons from Lou, I have been blessed or cursed as the case may be with many different instructcors. Lou is a stickler for doing things the correct way. And as an ex-army Lawyer, he’s good at making one face up to their deficiencies. And for sailing, I have lots of those. We went over terminology. I failed at holding onto the running rigging (what is the correct term for those little cliups again?). I failed at not letting the sail get into the water. I fail at moving from side to side. And I am terrified when the sail boat leans into the wind.
Sailboats are designed to lean into the wind. You go faster if when the sails are full and not as much boat is in the water. But that is scary. We must have been sailing at a 45 degree or more angle. Bob laughs, he3 says that 15 degrees is scary and 20 degrees of tilt is normal. No way, my angles were bigger than that. At least it felt really scary to me. I did shriek from fear several times. But Lou is a great instructor. And he had me practice those maneuvers where the boat tilts on a side over and over again. Let the sail out. Let it loose when you are scared and haul it back in so we go fast. Try again.
LIke I said, the man is a great instructor who makes you face what you don’t want to do. I learned alot. But I am not ready for checkout. There is at least one more lesson in my future. Someday I want to try sailing where it is fun, not scary work. Perhaps later this summer, that day might even occur. After I pass checkout.