This is the second of the memories about sailing on the Eleanor from R.S.B. of Rutland, Vermont.
Climbing into the far reaches of the hull to clean out the limber holes when I was 14 taught me a lesson that I wrote about in my high school English class. In the spring there was always much work to do to prepare the Eleanor for the launch. The mast had to be put in place, the bottom of the boat needed to be painted, anything loose needed to be tightened down, and every piece of equipment and sail needed to be inspected. So, up into the belly of the boat with a wire hanger to clean out the limber holes I crawled. That was a dirty job. It was carefully explained to me that without the care of the details of maintenance of the Eleanor, the integrity of the hull could weaken and she might not sail.
Sailboats are like love – each requires thoughtful and careful attention to the little things.
This memory reminds me of one of my husband’s sailing stories. Friends at work invited him to sail
the Bahamas with them. They were all big guys. Only when he was aboard did he realize that
they needed someone to go up the mast and squeeze into dirty places none of them could.
They sailed together for many years after that — JAH