When the doctors say I can’t go sailing yet I take it to mean ‘small boat’ sailing—discomfort, cold and the possibility of getting soaked—not standing on the weather deck of a brigatine under a sun hat watching other people pull ropes and climb rigging.
So over the past two months I’ve been very happy to join the crew of El Cyrano for their weekend sails from Tarragona Harbour. The sea off the city is littered with tankers waiting their turn to enter port, and when the call comes they up anchors and steam in. The captain of the Cyrano says it can be tricky. I agree as I’ve rowed and sailed OB across these waters a few times. For now though I can leave that worry to him.
The Cyrano makes a point of always unfurling all her sails. There are no winches, just muscle power. The brig heels slightly, rolls and creaks. The crew look proudly up at the broad expanses of billowing canvas. Obviously I’d rather be up the rigging myself, though that’s just a matter of time.