A day of clearing away tools and materials, but this evening I took Selene’s Dragon out into Mounts Bay for the first time, with Tim B and Richard B as very able and encouraging crew.
Nervous? Yes. Excited? Very. Amazed, exhilirated, delighted? All these things.
With the help of the Pz Harbour gatemen we eased out of the harbour, stopping to fill the fuel tank with diesel at the pontoon at the harbour entrance.
A fine Force 4 breeze with the odd gust to 5 I’d guess and a good southwesterly swell coming round the headland of Tata Du as we headed out in the bay, drawing parallel with Mousehole. We were just out for two hours, coming back into the Wet Dock before the gates closed. Not long but enough to feel the sea and wind and how SD holds and rises to it; strong and confident and steady – a powerful, stable boat with an appetite for more.
I felt very at home somehow – I’ve been dreaming and imagining this for a long time. Helped hugely by Tim and Richard ironing out wrinkles in the sails and jumping about so I could just enjoy the helm with a big grin on my face.
Finally, outside the harbour entrance, there was time to test the response of the boat to rudder and propellor as T and R coiled ropes and hung out fenders and readied mooring lines. I swung tight circles and turns, like a series of watery Victory Rolls – raising eyebrows in the Penzance Coastwatch tower just a few hundred yards away no doubt. But very useful to do and the way the boat moves in the water at close quarters beginning to make sense. The final test was to bring SD back into the harbour and carefully nose her back into the raft of visitor yatchs without banging into anything – it all worked out fine.
So where next? Well, nowhere for a while, just more of the same I hope – getting to know the boat better with day sails, and some over-nights at anchor in the bay if the winds are right. The main rig needs a service – all the winches and sheaves are complaining, squealing under load and needing grease or oil, and there are a few little niggles to sort out. And perhaps a trip to the Isles of Scilly later in the summer…