Monday, December 31, 2007
Sunday, December 30, 2007
OK. I did go out on Segue the last two days in a row. Friday the wind was light and I just ghosted around the harbor. Yesterday, December 29th, was a respectable 8 - 12 knots, and it was warm [in the 50's]. The breeze was out of the North West, and as the front passed there was a sweet rainbow on the border or the clouds and the clearing sky. On both days there were at least 5 other boats out. I guess more people are realizing that sailing doesn't have to stop November 15th.
Port does have an active Frostbiters fleet. But it revolves around racing. You have to sail from the Manhasset Bay Yacht Club, Sundays at 1 to 4pm, and can only sail an Ideal18, or a traditional, Interclub dingy. Interclubs are a very tender craft; as a result, they tend to cancel racing every time it's windy.
Saturday, December 22, 2007
For years it seemed like windsurfing became this competition to see who could be out on the smallest board given any set of conditions. Circa 2001 my board quiver was a
-70 ltr glass Gorge Custom, used with a 4.0, 4.5, or 5.0 sails
-85 ltr Naish 8'5" used with, 5.0, 5.5, & 6.0
-103 ltr Naish 8'11", used with, 6.0, 6.6, & 7.5
Now this is dramatically different from what I am sailing today.
-90 ltr Mistral Syncro, 4.2, 4.7, 5.0
-109 ltr JP FSW, 5.0, 5.5, 6.0, 6.5
-125 ltr Angullo Sumo, 6.5, 7.2, 8.5
A large part of this change to 'bigger' volume boards is because I routinely weigh over 200 lbs now. Vs. 160 to 170 when I was in my 30's. Plus, the newer shapes are shorter, wider, and have thiner rails than boards from 5 years ago. The rails are softer, and the rocker lines are more refined. Now sailing is less about overpowered straight line speed on a large fin. In fact, where as 5-10 years ago I would almost always have my foot straps in the farthest rear position, I now use one of the forward and inboard options.
I think I'm just adjusting my equipment to my less athletic sailing sailing style. All that pumping on to a plane takes it's toll on my shoulders. And let's face it; these newer boards are looser, and easier in the carves. I can't wait to go out and get the new JP dialed in. It should be interesting; especially because I've lost 20 pounds down to 190, to whatever this bug was I had. Believe me, I'll be back over 200 in no time.
Sunday, December 16, 2007
It's 9:30 now, and I can hear the wind howling outside. Think I need another few cups of coffee to get going. I know there are at least three guys out sailing now, maybe I'll just go out and watch from the warmth of the van. Or I could just stay inside snugged up in my PJ's...
Wednesday, December 12, 2007
Veneta Popow, 37, of Peekskill, N.Y., filed the suit seeking in excess of $75,000 for the death of her husband, 48-year-old Stoil Popow on Jan. 21, 2006.
The search for Popow, one of the most intensive ever in the area, included U.S. Coast Guard helicopters from as far away as Cape Cod and covered about 260 square miles.
The drowning also touched off worldwide reaction, as people from around the globe contributed money so the Bulgarian native's wish to be buried in his homeland could be realized.
U.S. Coast Guard officials said water had apparently filled Popow's dry suit when his body was discovered about two miles southeast of Stratford Point.
New York lawyer Mario Biaggi, representing the claimant, said Friday a key point in the suit is that a short time prior to Popow's death Stratford officials were forced to rescue a man in the same location.
"Our research turned up evidence that another person nearly drowned in the same spot," Biaggi said. "We believe that should have alerted town officials to taking precautions to prevent a tragedy they knew could happen."
The Popows immigrated to the United States from Bulgaria about 17 years ago, shortly after their marriage.
``I begged him not to go into the water because it's winter,'' Veneta
Biaggi said even if his client made those comments, "that still doesn't absolve the town of its negligence in Mr. Popow's death."
Named in the lawsuit are several current and former town firefighters, including Deputy Fire Chief Michael Hostetter, and Recreation Director Patricia Patusky.
The suit claims Stoil Popow's death was "a result of the negligence and carelessness" of the town in "failing to adequately warn the deceased and others of the hazardous and unsafe conditions present at Long Beach West and the surrounding waters of Long Island Sound."
The suit further states that Popow's death occurred because of Stratford's "failure to post warning signs, inviting the public to use Long Beach when there were no lifeguards on duty, failing to close the beach and or erect barriers limiting the public's access to the beach."
Also, the suit claims town firefighters efforts to rescue the drowning victim were carried out "with inadequate and or defective equipment incapable for completing a rescue in the conditions confronting the decedent."
Town Attorney Richard Buturla dismissed the suit's validity.
"We strongly deny all allegations and will rigorously defend the town in court," he said. "We do not believe there was any negligence on the part of the town."
Popow was a professional skier in his native Bulgaria and, after he drowned in a weekend kitesurfing accident, his widow and friends waged a worldwide effort to raise money to send his body back home for burial.
Biaggi said Friday that effort was successful and Popow was buried in his native land.
Friends and relatives described Popow at the time as an athletic man who could swim 15 miles.
Popow said after her husband drowned that he practiced kitesurfing more than three times a week. ``He was preparing himself to enter professional competitions,'' she said after his death, adding that her husband also "had experience in windsurfing and snowboarding. "
I can't begin to tell you how upset this makes me. Let me begin by saying that I consider Stoil's death a tragedy. He made several misjudgments that anyone could have made, including myself. There is no blame, or negligence, in his death.
I also windsurfed that same day. Wind forecasts were predicting a strong cold front from the North West that afternoon. We sailed from Stehle to take advantage of the wind shift. It was one of the best days sailing I remember.
My wife understands how much I love and respect the water. I hope she would never let some Lawyer talk her into filing a lawsuit that will jeopardize everyones beach access for decades.
I understand Stoil's wife is in pain. But this is not the answer.
Sunday, December 9, 2007
Saturday, December 8, 2007
On my way back I saw Garry heading out on "Winds of Change". It's nice to see another Alberg design out on the bay. I don't think I'd like a new boat. I'd be too paranoid that some one would smack into me again. I mean it's like hitting a parked car! Of course I've hit stuff too. When I was young and indestructible. It's just that I took responsibility for my actions. I guess people don't do that anymore.