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24th August, 0500 in the morning, the alarm is beeping, the sun has not raised yet and I have just realized that I will spent more time on the road that the time that I have spent sleeping. Why? Because that was the day that I had scheduled to enjoy the Round the world Yacht Thrill that my former colleagues from CTIC gave me when I left the company.
Destiny: Hamble. According to Google Maps arrive in Hamble from my home will take about 3 hours, I had to be in the Marina at 0930 so lets go. I left my home early, I took the bus to Clapham Junction where I bought the tickets for the train... OK, nothing was going wrong, I was on the train to Southamptom, mission accomplished. What?? I have to pay a supplement because I am in the first class coach!! (ok, I should have read the note in the seat, but it was so comfortable....). More than an hour later I was in Southampton: orange juice, coffee, brownie, 45 minutes waiting, taking another train and 30 minutes after that I was in Hamble thinking "OK, time enough". A bit later, I realized that I had to walk about 3Km along a narrow road to the marina. It took longer than expected, but finally I was there, just in time. Sunscreen, cap and everything was ready to enjoy the day.
In the office, a brief explanation about the experience and the next minute we were walking to the ship, an amazing Clipper 60. I had never sailed in a boat as big as that one. Once in the ship, basic concepts about security and we set the sails. Everything was ready to start.
The first 30 minutes I was a bit confused because everyone was talking too fast and I didn't know the jargon, but a bit later I was used to the environment and I really started to enjoy the experience. It was awesome. Nice weather and the wind speed was about 20 knots. We did a lot of tacks and jibes, took reefs, and we also changed several times the headsails (by the way, it was my first time sailing with the staysail)... I learnt a lot of things and also a new set of words to add to my vocabulary.
I tried to find out a way to start sailing periodically in London, but the truth is that I didn't receive useful information. Anyway, despite of the distance and the boring hours on the train, I would suggest this experience, it was great... now I am trying to do it again with some colleagues.
I am sure you don't want me to write about how I came back to London... you can guess how it was.
Pictures available in: the album that I have created in Google+