It’s All in the Delivery

The McKee Family Riptide 44 serves three purposes: cruiser, racer and self-exploration craft.

The McKee Family Riptide 44 serves three purposes: cruiser, racer and self-exploration craft. (Jay Leon/)

It’s been a great cruise. Ten days in sunny Desolation Sound, that warm water mecca on the central British Columbia coast where our family tries to go cruising every year. At the end of this particularly epic cruise, however, when it’s time to pack up and get on the sea plane back to Seattle, to reality, inspiration strikes.

On this afternoon, there is a fresh northwesterly blowing in Georgia Strait. The wind observations are in the low 20s, forecast to slowly ease through the night. Not that I’m paying attention anyway…I’ll be long gone on the next sea plane. But as I’m packing my duffle, it occurres to me that I do not have to fly home with the family. I can sail our 44-footer “Dark Star” back to Seattle and skip the delivery crew next week. Clearly the kids are ready to go home, and we are very nearly out of food. My wife, Libby can deliver them home. I can sail! Solo. Through the night. But downwind. I have coffee…

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