Sailing to Berkeley

Sea Lion
We went out around noon from Sausalito and then berthed in Berkeley. Then, set sail from Berkeley around 10am and met Javier at the dock at Fish! Restaurant, around 2:30PM. Tooled around the harbor there doing wacky crazy heeling, drinking beer & chips, and general crazy stuff. Then docked around 5pm. Cleaned up the boat, unpacked it, loaded the car, then drove back to Fish! for really good chowder & guacamole.

Both days were intense sailing back to back, and even now I’m not quite recovered. I was feeling very hesitant on the rudder- unusual water & low grade motion sickness, so ended up being the one who raising and lowering the sails and working the lines when docking. The second day, near the end, when we picked up Javier it was a huge break for me, and I got to just help him out with stuff. I realized how much energy I didn’t have watching him hop up to the bow to get the jib. But, note, I did not put the jib on backwards!

On the way out we got water that I hadn’t been in before. Heading into Raccoon Straits, it’s like the tide was with us, the current sweeping East, and we were kind of skating or surfing down each wave. The waves were about 4 ft tall, trough to crest. We only had the jib up. You really felt the strength of the waves on the South-Bay to North-Bay channel.
For Miriam
We had left the table berth still set up, and there’s a reason why you usually *don’t* do that. Right away when we heeled the luggage and tabletop came crashing into the galley. It was a total mess, and was kind of stresfsul for me, who had to climb in there to get stuff while the boat was rocking. I wonder if that contributed to overall unrest, as it was just chaos down there and I slipped a few times. I’m realizing more and more the value of being shipshape!

We didn’t see many yachts, but getting closer to the Berkeley pier we saw a lot more. I had remembered the old pier that is parallel to the Bay Brigge from a wedding cruise, so that was a big navigational help. We had a hard time recognizing East Bay landmarks from the water, then I saw a dark hill with white buildings in front of it that reminded me of my nephew’s soccer practice exit off of 80. Random, random personal landmarks! That, with knowing the old pier was too far south, and we got close enough to Berkeley to recognize the Oakland-Claremont tower, and UC Berkeley’s campaniles. It was a pretty foggy, grey day and the chop was really high in the channel. I realied if I kept singing random Edith Piaf songs I didn’t get so freaked out that I was in the middle of the East Bay.


Unfortunately my Berkeley relative- sister & her family- weren’t in town or else they would have had a short bike ride to meet us. Tink ran into an old sailing teacher at Berkeley. It was neat to arrive and instantly know people there. Three guys, who sailed over from San Francisco and were headed back at 4pm. I was impressed that they could return so quickly. Hoping to get invited onto their yacht sometime.

In Berkeley, we christened Tink’s new habachi with marinated chicken strips & zucchini. Nothing eventful there really, mostly fighting fatigue and hanging out at Hana Japan, a kind of local favorite sushi place like Beni Hana’s. We got in early to get our key so we had hours to kill at the marina.

One of my favorite neighbors there was “Still Fishen’” from “Bezerkeley” who listened to Metallica at 9am, heading out to… fish, I expect. Bezerkeley was a lot quieter than Sausalito. Not sure why- the winds were down because of this nice breakwater they have. So the halyerds don’t clack quite so noisily on the mast.

I slept in the v-berth, and just like in camping, found about three positions I could rotate around all night. Both Tink & I had weird nightmares about the boat. Me: some weird line in the mast was broken and needed to be repaired, and that would leave us at the Berkeley dock for 5 days. Tink’s is funnier- she has us out adrift. Someone loosened our moorings, and I say something- in her dream- like “Oh yeah, I remember someone untying our lines from the dock.” Ha ha.

On the way back, it was beautiful water all the way to Sausalito. Super fun tinkering around Richardson Bay- the wind was very gusty and there’s so many boats moored out in the middle that Tink had to navigate quite a bit. Finally she got to do extreme heeling without me shrieking!

As I was falling asleep, it’s like my body remembered the movement of the water. Going into sleep, I had this all over body motion memory of the dipping of the waves. Of course watching two back-to-back Deadliest Catch episodes didn’t help!

Indian Summer