A Limerick man's Adventure in Long Island Sound

Written by Shay Dooley

Continued from page 1

We came below, andrepparttar motion was now bad owing torepparttar 145395 waves and wind, and having no rig. The waves were 12 to 15' occasionally breaking, but steady now fromrepparttar 145396 SW. We were all feeling ill, especially Wendy, who was also a bit panicky and tearful. We had 2 handheld vhf on board and an EPIRB. We sent out a distress message on Ch 16 for 2 hours, and nobody responded. We saw two ships pass close by, and they went right by us. We sent up two rocket flares. Nothing.

We were about 25 miles south of Long Island, and about 15 miles east of New Jersey (Barnagat Bay). We were inrepparttar 145397 main approaches to New York Harbour and nobody was responding. Our VHF was obviously weak. We had no lights, no engine, no rig and it was not that good a situation. We all rested for a couple of hours, and at 0530, we decided we had to do something. We could hearrepparttar 145398 Coastguard andrepparttar 145399 radio on Ambrose light, but they could not hear us.

As it got bright at about 0700, we decided to try and rig a jury rig onrepparttar 145400 stump. If this were not possible, we would set offrepparttar 145401 EPIRB. In order to get going, we had three problems:

1:repparttar 145402 dinghy was upside down and inrepparttar 145403 water 2: we had a sea anchor out 3: how to haul a sail up a mast stump with no rig.

The dinghy was probablyrepparttar 145404 most dangerous thing aboutrepparttar 145405 morning. It is a rigid 9' made of cold moulded wood and epoxy. We got it long side, butrepparttar 145406 motion made things tricky. Then we righted it awash, and managed to get two buckets on lines into it and emptied it. We put it out on a line, and tackledrepparttar 145407 sea anchor. It was a big parachute basically and we usedrepparttar 145408 lifting bow withrepparttar 145409 anchor windlass to getrepparttar 145410 thing onboard. Ashley pulled and I tailed.

We came back torepparttar 145411 cockpit andrepparttar 145412 dinghy was upside down again. Cut it loose or try again. Asrepparttar 145413 rig had wreckedrepparttar 145414 wind vane when it came down, we had more or less a fairly clear aft deck. We again hauledrepparttar 145415 damn dinghy in and righted it. We emptied it again, and again by usingrepparttar 145416 rolling motion ofrepparttar 145417 boat, we got it on deck. We lashed it acrossrepparttar 145418 transom upside down.

That leftrepparttar 145419 mast and how to get a sail up it. We had a combination of jibs. The mast still had two hoops left on it fromrepparttar 145420 mainsail. We lashed them together and attached a block with a halyard. We then shovedrepparttar 145421 hoops uprepparttar 145422 mast as far as we could with a rowing sweep. We then lashedrepparttar 145423 sweep torepparttar 145424 mast and we had a halyard. The sweep was lashed torepparttar 145425 base ofrepparttar 145426 mast and lashed torepparttar 145427 hoops. We then lashedrepparttar 145428 tack of a jib torepparttar 145429 halyard, lashedrepparttar 145430 clew torepparttar 145431 base ofrepparttar 145432 mast, and attached a sheet torepparttar 145433 head ofrepparttar 145434 jib. We raised it gingerly and it worked.

We broughtrepparttar 145435 bow round torepparttar 145436 northeast and got going at about 0930 Wednesday. That all took about three hours. Under this jury rig, we averaged 4.5 knots forrepparttar 145437 next 30 hours and actually sailed to Martha's Vineyard. We had covered about 230 miles Sunday Monday and Tuesday. We coveredrepparttar 145438 remaining 130 miles in 30 hours with this jib set at 90 degrees.

The wind stayed WNW; about 25 to 30 knots, so we had a broad reach run on 60 magnetic to Martha's Vineyard. We sailed past Long Island, Montauk Point, Wednesday night, as well as Block Island, and by dawn Thursday morning, we were about 20 miles SW ofrepparttar 145439 Vineyard. It was a lee shore, and as we had limited manoeuvrability, we calledrepparttar 145440 Harbourmaster at Newport RI andrepparttar 145441 same atrepparttar 145442 Vineyard, and eventuallyrepparttar 145443 Harbour master at Vineyard sent out a launch to tow usrepparttar 145444 last few miles. We tied up about 1600.

News spreads like wildfire, and there was quite a crowd onrepparttar 145445 dock by 1700. We were all soaked and caked in salt. The boat was a mess below. I am not going to into all that, but suffice to say; every part ofrepparttar 145446 inside ofrepparttar 145447 boat was wet. A woman took away all our wet clothes and brought them back dry and clean 2 hours later. We then had showers and a change of clothes. Life felt a lot better.

We were taken for a meal, but we were falling asleep fromrepparttar 145448 heat inrepparttar 145449 restaurant and from sheer fatigue.

We were back inrepparttar 145450 boat by 2100 and asleep. I spent Friday then, getting from Martha's Vineyard to Annapolis to my car.

Quite a week. One of life's experiences.

Lessons: 1:repparttar 145451 forecast never lies. We were complacent. We should have been prepared forrepparttar 145452 sudden wind shift.

2: it wasrepparttar 145453 outer jib that broughtrepparttar 145454 mast down. Notrepparttar 145455 main. The boom was inrepparttar 145456 water andrepparttar 145457 main was luffing.

3:repparttar 145458 sheets forrepparttar 145459 headsails should have been led aft intorepparttar 145460 cockpit. They were secured forward ofrepparttar 145461 mast

what would we have done different? Not a lot. Maybe set offrepparttar 145462 EPIRB.

Duringrepparttar 145463 fight to survive, my thoughts returned to sailing onrepparttar 145464 lower Shannon between Foynes and Carrigaholt, sailing round to Cork fromrepparttar 145465 Shannon in all kinds of conditions, running through Blasket and Dursey Sounds, beating hard in a Mirror dinghy in Galway Bay, freezing in a Laser in Dromineer, and many other happy thoughts.

Anyway, out of this, we learn how much we can cope with adversity. I found myself afterwards thanking God forrepparttar 145466 chances we had in recovering fromrepparttar 145467 situation, and later while sitting for hours helming, wishing that all of life's problems could be dealt with like losing a mast.

I did not know Ashley and Wendy two weeks ago. Now, we have been through quite an experience.

So, who says Limerick men don't have adventures abroad. - http://www.limerick.com

Shay Dooley, formerly of Priory Park, Clancy's Strand, Limerick now living in the US: http://www.limerick.com

Driving in Greece - How Bad is it?

Written by Emmanuel Mendonca

Continued from page 1

A Few Road Tips

- The first and most important one is to just be alert. This will keep you safe onrepparttar road 99.99% ofrepparttar 145394 time. I realised recently that I am now no longer just looking atrepparttar 145395 car in front of me when I drive, but I am also unconsciously looking through his windshield atrepparttar 145396 car in front of him. You will soon develop quicker reactions and a sixth sense for when someone is going to do something unorthodox. Driving back inrepparttar 145397 UK would probably feel pretty dull now!

- Care needs to be taken on roundabouts, because it seems thatrepparttar 145398 rule isrepparttar 145399 person who drives most aggressively, regardless of whether they are already onrepparttar 145400 roundabout or entering it, isrepparttar 145401 one who has priority.

- Unlike inrepparttar 145402 UK, when another driver flashes his headlights at you, he is not letting you pass, he is warning you that he is coming and to stay out ofrepparttar 145403 way. The same goes for when someone honks their horn. If someone is letting you pass, they will usually wave you through with their hand.

- In built-up areas, go carefully through crossroads, because people do not always respect stop signs and may also have their view of you blocked by cars parked right onrepparttar 145404 street corner.

- In response to what I said earlier about red traffic lights, whenrepparttar 145405 lights turn green do not move off without checking that there are no latecomers coming from another junction. When I first started driving here, I thought that people had a slow reaction time whenrepparttar 145406 lights turn green but now I realise they are just being careful.

Emmanuel Mendonca is the webmaster and publisher of Athens Room at www.athensroom.com - a free service for finding and advertising property for rent in Athens, with a wealth of information about visiting, living and working in Greece.

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