Short Sailing with Dolphins & the Forester's

The Forester's

One the day before Halloween we took the Buena Vista out for a cool, windy sail with our friends Evan and Morgan Forester. We pushed off the dock around 12:30 PM and only had about an hour to play until they had to make the looooooonnggg drive back to Atlanta. If you’ve even driven on I-16 in Georgia you know what I mean, it’s nothing but trees for miles.

Once in the open river Kristen and Evan got the main up pretty quickly. Due to the high winds we only put the main up which was more than enough canvas to get us moving. I would like to point out that Kristen is getting quite comfortable on the ol’ boat and that’s making me a very happy guy.

Once underway and everyone got comfortable the fun began. You need to know that Morgan and Evan keep up a blog of their own ( and to help with the blog they got a VERY nice camera and learned how to use it. After digging in his bag of tricks Evan started a photo shoot on the decks of the Buena Vista. While trying to keep the boat from heeling too far, I would look up and see the girls posing while Evan in some ever changing, awkward position snapping photos. The things you will see on a boat…

The ladies.
By the time the photo shoot started to wind down, we were sailing downriver toward the old, rundown condos that would be a perfect setting for a horror movie. About that time the dolphins showed up, and by “showed up” I mean that they were everywhere. I think they were feeding as the tide was pushing the bait out of the river, but it was awesome. They were on all sides of the boat and as close as 10-15 yards. The water loving mammals put on a great show and everyone loved it. I guess I’m running a dolphin tour boat now?? (“That will be $29.50 per ticket please.”)To make it more entertaining Kristen was given the camera and she took pictures of EVERYTHING like Dolphins, me, Morgan, Evan, the boat, Paula’s house, the sky, birds, blah, blah, blah…

A pro
After all of that excitement it was time to head back so the Forester’s could make the trip back before too late. I hope to get some of the pictures from their camera because once I got home I discovered that I forgot to chance the settings on my camera and all of the pictures were off color (Irony?).

Overall it was a fun trip, but short. This was a cold and windy October day, it helped to set the reality that the 2011 sailing season is almost over, but not yet!

What was in that Champagne? Rocket Fuel? Pixy Dust?

(Image courtesy of Kristen in the Media Relations Department)

After doing some research on the internets and given our recent streak of bad luck I decided that we need to do something drastic to appease Mother Ocean. We had to officially christen the Buena Vista by the proper, age old tradition of giving a blood sacrifice (or the next best thing).

According to my in depth research (a quick Google search), to change the name of a boat you need to christen it to let the Gods know that the ship’s old name will no longer be on the water and that they need to keep watch over the vessel under the new name. In order to do this, a captain gathers anyone and everyone that will come in contact with the boat and does the following…
  1. He appeals to all of the Gods he can think of that deal with water (God, Poseidon, Neptune, Jimmy Buffett, etc.) and lets them know the boat has changed names.
  2. In the old days he would give a blood sacrifice offered to the Gods and poured onto the bow of the ship, (we’re not that into the "traditional" so we went with the modern method of using red wine/cheap champagne)
  3. Everyone in attendance toasts to the ship, the Gods, and overall good weather.
  4. The captain takes the boat out immediately for the inaugural voyage.
Now that the traditions were out of the way it was time to hit the seas. It was a full crew today with me, Kristen, Grant, Sean, and Courtney on board. Once we were on the river the wind was in our favor and blowing out toward the ocean. We had the wind to our backs and we quickly got the sails up.

Why yes, these shades are awesome.
Now we were sailing and it seemed like everything was working in our favor today. Maybe the christening really worked?!? With both the sails up we quickly gained some knots and were sailing in the desired direction. At this point we were able to do something that has never been seen before on the Buena Vista…relaxing/chilling/taking it easy.

Is this what sail in supposed to look like?

By this point we already made it further downriver than ever before and were headed toward the open ocean. But all good things must come to an end because we had plans for that afternoon so it was time to come about and motor back (or so we thought). Once we got the sails down and the motor fired up another sailor started gaining on us from behind. About that time the entire crew looked at me and the race was on…

Workin’ like a well oiled machine.

We hoisted the sails and caught the wind off of the port rail. After double checking we were holding our on with the other sailor and were actually moving FASTER than our speed with the motor. We were sailing somewhat into the wind to boot. What was in that champagne? Rocket Fuel? Pixy Dust? I don’t know but whatever it was it was working. Everything was going so well that it even gave Sean some time to enjoy his new hobby of spying on people with binoculars and scanning the Coast Guard channels on the radio.


Once the wind died down and the sailor was out of range we decided it was time to fire up the motor once more. With many hands on board we got the sails down and covered in a flash so we could enjoy the cruse back into port. Sean even got to take the tiller for a while to test out his skills at the helm.

Don’t get too excited Sean

Overall I was a great day for the Buena Vista and crew. Following the christening everything seemed to work in our favor. We had the wind at our backs, the ability to go where we wanted to go, perfect weather, and the beloved motor actually ran when asked. The only thing we had to worry about was our sunglasses tan.