Noon Position: 57° 52.9‘ N 010° 50.5‘ E
Weather: Air 16°C, Sea 15°C, Cloudy, Wind NNE 7-10 Knots, Sea State 2 (smooth)
The Starting Line
All around us and especially astern one could admire tall ships under full sails, blue skies, and deep teal saltwater as we approached the starting line of our race. Tall ship races happen relatively slowly, so our view changed- but hour by hour, not moment by moment. This suited us well and there were many cameras on deck to capture a view normally now only seen in paintings in museums.
My watch is the 0-4, and we were on duty when the race began at noon. Most of our watch actually sailed together last year, and the newcomers either have experience or are quick studies. Taking it in turns to keep lookout and man the helm, the rest of us worked under the direction of our watch leader Max and Mate Axel to set sails appropriate for our Captain Tilman‘s course.
Part of the appeal of sailing as a trainee is focusing wholly on one task at a time. There’s a chain of command doing the tricky thinking- all I need to do is exactly what I’m told, safely and efficiently. These tasks are conveyed in German commands, and the concentration required is entire. There’s no room left in your mind to worry over the rest of the world. The uncertain future can wait. Here there is only the sea, the sky, your ship and your crewmates. And all the shipping of Kattegat, but that just keeps the lookout occupied.