… Jiggedity, Jig! The best part of taking a holiday, and going on a sailing adventure, is coming home. I had never been away from our Monster, not more than a night in succession. In fact, in the past year and eight months I’ve lived aboard I have only spent a total of 2 nights away from the boat. So, when an opportunity arose to sail aboard the magestical Empire Sandy, I trepidiously packed our bags. We were bound for Brockville, and The All Ships Festival, sailing east across Lake Ontario through the St. Lawrence River and the 1000 Islands. This was going to be the closest I would come to having a summer sailing holiday with Gordon, the Boy, and the Dog! I put my nerves aside, as really, I was quite excited to be part of an away trip on the Empire Sandy!
It took a good solid day for me to unwind. I had just finished up a stint of 4 days of work, and with preparing to go away for near a week my mind was running overtime. We left Toronto on a sunny Wednesday afternoon. One of my favorite aspects of our trip was my night watch, it had been a long time since I’d woken at an ungodly hour in the night to stand a watch. I was on the 4-8 and I was flooded with memories of night watches past. The 4-8 covers the best parts of the day, sunset and sunrise…
Thursday greeted the Ship and her Crew with a simply splendid day of sunshine and summer heat as we motored down the St. Lawrence River through the 1000 Islands. Sadly, the wind was also on vaycay. However, we couldn’t have sailed through the St.Lawrence Seaway even if we wanted to. Our Boy lived the high life that afternoon as the Crew dug out an inflatable pool, and a rather large one at that. In no time our Son was splashing about and squealing with delight in the pool as we meandered down the river. Many a local boat buzzed around reveling in our presence, snapping pictures and waving with gusto.
Once the ship was all secure at her weekend berth at Hardy Park, the crew embarked upon their usual activities, or should I say festivities? I can say that we had an amazing crew dinner, all seated around a large table with delicious steak and wine in hand. Thank you dear Chefs! After that, well, what happened in Brockville stays in Brockville.
Friday evening was the first of our dinner cruises. And so the weekend continued as we hosted 7 cruises over the next 48 hours. The decks were opened each morning for deck tours, followed by a couple short but sweet afternoon cruises, and then the dinner cruise. Father’s Day also fell during our weekend in Brockville. We were lucky to have Gordon’s Parents/ Boy’s Grandparents, Doug and Evelyn, come and visit us for a couple nights. I think I can say they immensely enjoyed sailing with us and spending time with their Grandson! Come Sunday and the final dinner cruise our gangway was swung and stowed aboard and we were once again underway. Bound for Toronto, and home. It was a fantastic trip indeed, and some great summer memories were made. Seeing our Boy revel in and enjoy this trip was truly fullfilling. If there is anything better than sailing a tall ship with a star to steer her by, it would have to be having such an opportunity to share it all with our Boy, and all the joy it encompassed.
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