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Thread: EBB's PHOTO GALLERY THREAD

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  1. #27
    Join Date
    Sep 2001
    Location
    San Rafael, CA
    Posts
    3,543

    Anybody see this boat on San Francisco Bay?

    {Pg21 #420}
    SKUA was donated to - what they said was - a sailing school for 'disadvantaged' kids in
    Alviso / San Jose. May have expected new owners to come back with a Hi! and a few
    photos of happy young urban sailors pulling ropes or something. Eventually looked up
    the school on the web, discovered the guy who signed the papers had a very abrasive
    relationship, not only with Alviso locals, but with various bayshore restoration agencies,
    and the all powerful BCDC. They dragged him into court and punished him with huge
    fines for dumping riprap on his shore front.
    Photos, also found on the web, revealed the school office to be a dilapidated trailer,
    and a marina totally overgrown and disappeared into a sea of rush and cattails.

    Drove down there once: trailer was gone, found a 'no trespass' sign that also identified
    the vacated mess as sailing school property,
    abandoned plastic boats in the photos were gone.

    .................................................. .................................................. ..................................
    Skuas mate for life. They are found at both poles and are pelagic. They eat penguin
    chicks whole. They don't fish, they take it away from specialist birds. Kind of like
    politicians, and amateur boatbuilders.
    They are fearless, will attack humans when they go near their young.

    There be no sea hawks, but if there were, they be skuas. They are ends-of-the-earth
    creatures. When polar explorers see a bird, it's likely a skua sailing by. Back then,
    seemed like a great boat name for embracing global adventures and the future together.
    When our single chick turned 18, divorce made it a relic.

    Took the boat out on the Bay... alone, stupidly... without an experienced sailor to chat
    with. The narrow bow and beam, and long heavy bowsprit seemed wrong for offshore,
    it's long straight keel and shallow draft gave it an uncomfortable tippy motion.
    But the boat was a memento of a broken 30year partnership - couldn't raise sail without
    ache in the gut. Tried to sell it. One guy came aboard, sat down with me in the all
    teak accommodation below, and told me all what was wrong with my apprentice ship.

    Historical photo in the previous post reminds me -- when I see those strangers: new
    owner and his buddies on deck, they had just picked up Skua in Sausalito and were
    headed south to the bottom of the Bay -- remember at the time having a feeling that
    something wasn't right. The clowns didn't have a sailor's curiosity to hank on the staysl
    and spread that glorious gaff main!

    Man!...cutter still looks pretty cool!
    And in a couple winks, she was gone like a bird. The link broke forever. Without a trace.

    .................................................. .................................................. ..................................
    Jack Boyce and Joanne Kyger, who had property in Bolinas, were building a house,
    saw my ridiculous and isolated predicament (beginning to work on the hull at 10thSt in
    Berkeley), and invited me out, lock, stock and barrel to build the boat there, with friends,
    without rent, at the end of their driveway in rural California. It became more than 30
    years of awakening, working for Bill Brown as a gardener, love, marriage, finding
    carpentry, curmudgenery, fatherness, and divorce.


    Boat itself could not have been built without the support, patience, advice, and genius
    of yacht designer Lauren Williams.

    Nor could the Skua have made it out of the ...... Lagoon without the lip and tips and
    hilarious weekend lunches at Ed Letter's Marine in Bobo with Babe Lamerdin, John
    Linderman and the Elizabeth Muir. No one told a joke better than Babe, and John
    could recite every twisted limerick ever conceived in the cerebral cortex of the human male.

    And later on, the guidance and teaching of Donald Goring at Lee Sail Loft, Alameda,
    who so generously laid out and cut on his loft floor the Egyptian cotton we brought him
    -- and taught the EX the marvelous exacting art of sewing and roping a gaff mainsail.
    An amazing achievement -- that huge sail -- every stitch, rat-tail and cringle by hand !!
    Jib and staysl, too!!


    Quite possibly never thanked her enough...
    Nor the extraordinary sailors who shared their time and passion and know-how with us...
    Last edited by ebb; 04-02-2017 at 03:07 PM.

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