Chicago - Mac / Bayview Mac Lessons Learned #1
Over the course of the next few days I will be blogging on lessons learned in our 22 days "before the mast." OK, Henry Dana did 2 years, but who is counting. Today - Lessons Learned from Sue... First, because it was so extraordinary, I learned it is possible to eat well at sea. Sue took responsibility for the provisioning and the food preparation. She placed a strong emphasis on fresh foods rather than prepared, something I don't even do at home. In the course of her cooking we learned a couple of things: 1) You have to have fiddles to hold the pots on the stove - I have them somewhere, but they really need to get back on the boat. 2) We suffered from not having a tea kettle to boil water. We used an open pan and were constantly spilling water while trying to pour. 3) Know the limit of the stove's ability to tilt. We would race at a greater heeling angle than the stove could swing (see fiddles, above!) 4) Understand the stove's balance. I had never used the oven so was not prepared the first time we opened the oven door and the whole stove over tilted (see fiddles above!) 5) The cook needs some kind of harness arrangement to ease staying in place while cooking. I am so big that I sort of fill up all the space, I could tell that Sue was working hard sometimes at just standing in front of the stove. Second, have something to keep you occupied during your time on watch and particularly on the rail. Sue sketched and wrote in a log book the entire trip. (She also prepared a safety equipment location sheet that we needed for the race. She clearly enjoyed keeping a record. Next time (yes, I know, light is fast, take off all unnecessary weight) I will bring a book or two to keep me occupied. Third, be quiet when on watch. I had completely forgotten how noises travel at night and was, frankly, too loud. Sue pointed this out to me but was gracious enough not to demonstrate when I was trying to sleep. Sue also helped me understand some major setup deficiencies in Reboot. They were: 1) No lee cloths. Our sleeping suffered. 2) No good place for a "wet locker." We used the main salon but that was not very desirable. Perhaps the next time we will use the aft head and use the forward head as the "head." 3) As noted above, better setup of the kitchen area for cooking. I am sure she taught me more, but at the moment nothing is coming to mind. Thanks Sue for all the lessons learned. Feel free to comment on what I have forgotten!