September 17, 2008

Mike is a great guy; he loves to get out on the water, regardless of the conditions. When I was moored on H-dock, Mike was my neighbor. He had recently bought a 50 foot blue water boat named Bamboo. It was a real fixer-upper. He spent the winter of 2007 gutting out everything inside the boat, including a bathtub.

Once Mike and I sailed to Bell Harbor Marina in downtown Seattle while a storm was building. We didn't care, we wanted an Elvis Burrito in Belltown. Upon returning from dinner the winds had picked up to 35 knots with 6 foot swells. I told Mike I was out of my league and we should only continue if he felt he was comfortable with the conditions. Mike didn't flinch, he grabbed the tiller and we were off into the night. It was the heaviest conditions I had ever seen. We surfed down the face of waves, the winds wrapped my halyards in knots around the mast, my boat took the gravest beating I'd ever witnessed; very thrilling but a bit intimidating.

When we arrived back at our home port at 11 pm. I said, "Damn Mike that was the heaviest shit I've been in. I'm glad you were on board." He said, "Yep, me too, I've never been in anything like that either." I looked at him funny. I had figured with his confidence, he had been in those conditions often. Just goes to show, you don't need experience to be confident - especially when you're in someone else's boat.

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