Sunday, March 30, 2008

WHAT HAPPENED THESE LAST TWO DAYS?

Yet again no photos - sorry about that!
So, let's start with Friday. I was busy up in Gozo most of the day cos had guests leaving and arriving. Fortunately I managed to get back by about 3 to find hubbie and youngest son faithfully waiting for 'mother' to go windsurfing. They had all equipment packed in back of van - even drink and sandwiches - I WAS impressed! The wind was blowing and we sped off towards Ghallis. By the time I got there the wind was blowing a good 6 to 7 with some gusts probably stronger. The shore break wasn't too bad - not bad enough to put me off going down. So I rigged the 4m and out I went. The waves and swell on the point were great - hadn't been out in those conditions down at Ghallis for one hell of a long time. Some pretty big swell and I was loving it! Have to admit at one time it did cross my mind ''What the heck am I doing out here at my age?'' - but then it was up and over the next wave and back in bombing down (unhooked and right at the edge of being catapulted) back in and just enjoying the adrelanin rush and I knew why I was out there. John sailed really well and got in some nice wave rides and high jumps. By the time we came back out the shore break had built up a bit but there was help to get out - but cramp in the calf didn't really help the situation. As I was on the water and had no intention of giving up any time to take photos - result is NO PICS.

Yesterday was a fantastic Spring day. Really lovely weather with just a light breeze and clear skies. Anton and I drove to Ta'Santi and parked the car and walked out to Fomm ir-Rih. First mishap was just as we arrived I realised I had put the damaged camera card into the camera - so no pics once again! Second mishap was when we reached a fantastic viewing point on the edge of the cliff overlooking Gnejna Bay and across the Golden Bay and beyond towards Gozo in the distance (stunning view). We sat to have a welcome cup of tea and biscuit which I had brought along in my napsack. Realised I fogot the herbal tea bags! So we improvised - we had the hot water and stuck a sprig of Wild Thyme in the mug. It was actually quite pleasant drinking, so not such a disaster after all.

John is racing on the yacht 'ARTIE' this weekend. There is a Gozo weekend for the yachts so he is up there for 3 days of racing which should be great fun.

Today a light breeze and nice and sunny. We will take another walk this afternoon and this time I will make sure no mishaps with the camera.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

video

This walk takes place around Buskett in Malta. Enjoy!

2forTen the Movie

This must be one of the best freestyle videos I have seen. Gollito is just insane!

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Where Are They Now? Part 1

Phew! Not sure what I got myself in for here. It is definitely a time consumer and not as easy to find the actual info I want. So starting with the first part for a taster. Thought I would start at the very beginning with the 'TWO' inventors themselves and a black & white of the original Tencate - teak boom and all. Can you remember those wooden booms and the boom connection it had - trying to tie it well enough so it doesn't slip! Why did they take so long to invent boom clamps!

Following Hoyle and Jim (on first name terms here!) I thought it apt to follow up with the late Arnaud and stunning Jenna de Rosnay.
All comments and suggestions welcome.



We never bothered about the wind force in those days.



Hoyle Schweitzer



Jim Drake



So let’s start at the beginning. There was Hoyle Schweitzer and Jim Drake. I won’t even mention the battle that followed after windsurfing took off. Let’s just say that they both brought the sport into being and leave it there. HS was a business man and JD was a an aeronautical engineer. They actually patented it in 1968 (that’s quite a while ago when you come to think of it!). It was in 1973 that Tencate was licenced to start producing the ‘windsurfer’.

If you want to read an interview about all the stuff that went on then you can find it on the
www.windsurfingacademy.com site.



What are they doing now? Well I have looked and looked and can’t find anything on what they are actually doing in the ‘here and now’, but probably if not already retired close onto retirement. Correct me if I’m wrong! Just want to say a big THANK YOU to these guys cos just what would our lives have been like without them? Did you ever stop to think about that?







The lovely Jenna de Rosnay (er...I had to clip this pic otherwise we would have had an entry for the 'wet t-shirt' competition......sorry about that Horsey!)


Baron Arnaud de Rosnay, a Parisian aristocrat and heir to a Mauritian sugar fortune, was the great windsurfing long distance pioneer. Achieving amazing distances and crossings such as the Bering Straits (during the Cold War and without the permission of the Soviets!), Miami to Cuba amongst others. One very ambitious crossing attempt was the 500 miles from the Marquesas to Tahiti. It was meant to take 5 days but it took him nearly 2 weeks to reach French Polynesia. He had encountered shark attacks besides the obvious dehydration, bad hands etc. He then decided to sail from China to Taiwan across the 100 mile Taiwan Strait in the South China Sea. Unfortunately he never made it and was never found. What actually happened has remained a mystery – it could be a number of things, but won’t go into that.




Jenna – well guys eat your heart out. She just has it all – probably every man’s dream (and woman’s too – to look like that is!). She is mid 40’s now but probably looks no older than about 30! She had a rough time losing her husband Arnaud, but is now married once again. Took the following from her site:


‘’Jenna de Rosnay is now remarried to French music entrepreneur Emmanuel de Buretel. In addition to her daughter with Arnaud, she is the mother of three young girls. She now divides her time between islands; an island in Paris, the British Isles, the Caribbean, and Hawaii. Even when she's in town, even when Maui is 24 hours away, water is never far. ‘’


Jenna was once the World Speed queen establishing world records when Weymouth was big on the speed calendar.
Needless to say Jenna became, and still is, a fashion icon. She worked with Dior, Nike, Celine and Sports Illustrated besides being cover girl for Vogue and Elle. She has her own creations now.


She has it all!

New Idea!

Had a nice sail yesterday. Sailed in the bay again. Big shore break Ghallis but no wind - at least didn't miss anything by not going down there. Was on my 74 litre with 4.5m but would have been better off with a bit more volume cos there were quite a few lulls. BUT I am just SO enjoying being on the water. It has been such a lousy winter windwise, just hoping that the Spring will carry on with good wind. It was lovely and warm yesterday - around 19C with really clear blue sky - not a cloud.

Right........this morning had an idea - ttrrriing! (That's the light going on in my head by the way).
Windsurfing is a 'new' sport. In the sense that the ''pioneers'' are now heading toward - should we say - the slightly 'later' stretch of their lives! It would be interesting to select a few of these original well known surfers and take a look at what they are doing today. Are they still involved in the sport, or has the sport had a huge impact on what they did and are still doing with their lives?

I am one of those persons who was introduced to the sport just a couple of years after its conception so to speak. I have seen it thru every little bit of change including the change over when the whole windsurfing world community was focussed on 'Olympic Racing' over to the 'Funboard' era when chopping your old Tencate and trying to make your boards was the in thing...............well the rest is history!

Basically I thought - well there must be quite a large community of us out there who have seen the sport all the way thru and are still ultra keen and practicing. So, any contributions would be welcome. I'm sure someone has probably come up with this already on their blog, but maybe I will have some different personalities on this one. I need to do a bit of research, so it won't be up today.

Sorry no pic but took a load yesterday and John actually took some too with me in them and guess what? There's something wrong with the card! It seems I am doomed not to be able to see what I look like when I am on the water......well perhaps thats better on second thoughts!

Monday, March 24, 2008

Feelin' Good!

Tommy



Great! A brilliant start to the week - hopefully a warm up for all the wind that is meant to be happening all week.
We sailed in the bay cos it was a bit too westerly for Ghallis. I was a bit over at first with it howling a 7 and even 8 at times, but then it went down a bit and was much more sailable without having to battle with the wind too much. Had the 4m Tushingham (great sail - especially as small sails go cos I don't usually like using 4's) and my 74L Fanatic New Wave.
Hopefully it will turn a bit more North Westerly now so we can sail in Ghallis and enjoy the waves - much more exciting.





Sunday, March 23, 2008

Antarctica Photos




A great friend of ours (who is an avid sailor and a person I have great admiration for - also used to be one of our 'early days' windsurfers) went for a once in a lifetime holiday to Antarctica. He was onboard a large yacht. Well, won't go into too much detail cos the pics speak for themselves.


Above is a great shot - one way of enjoying a beer!

This Weel's Weather Forecast

Easter Sunday '08:

Have a look at this week's weather forecast - one massive amount of wind all week, and a good direction too.

http://www.windfinder.com/forecast/luqa

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Just A Quickie

Just a quick entry - have been up in Gozo the past few days and had a great relaxing time for a change instead of working. Did a nice walk..........but forgot to take the camera, so will have to do them again to get some shots! Last night there was the traditional Good Friday procession and I got a load of pics so will put them up on a slide show - maybe tonight. Right now have to rush on out again.
WIND - well it looks like a week of wind ahead. Tomorrow is going to be strong SW but can't make it as have family commitments being Easter Sunday. Practically all next week is looking good though with force 6 WNW for Monday and Tuesday then dropping off a bit and picking up again towards end of week. So fingers crossed.

HAPPY EASTER ALL! XX

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Photos of Storm

The mush in Mellieha



There was an extremely strong current (John coming up)




Gamblu






The edge of the breakwater into the Grand Harbour









The last posts of my blog have been a bit bare without photos, so I am putting up some photos of the big North Easterly storm we had at the end of Jan.

Is It Going To Be a Good Spring?

The question is ''Is it going to be a good spring wind wise?'' Well it certainly can't be any worse than it has been this winter. We thought last winter was bad.......................well this one was worse!! Last week was a record for this year surfing 3 days in a week! Went down to Ghallis yesterday and quite a few people showed up - we even rigged! Bad thing to do cos as soon as the wind gods saw us rigging they turned the switch off!! Shame cos I passed Ghallis early in the morning it looked so good, same thing happened today with wind in the morning but by lunch time it had died down. Thing is no one can go down till mid day cos of work and there is no way I will go down to Ghallis on my own, so.....................oh well! Fingers crossed for next week.
This weekend there is going to be NO wind whatsoever - looks more like wakeboarding type of weather coming. Instead I think I will charge up the camera batteries and we can go off and have a nice walk and picnic somewhere - its going to be really warm too so that will be nice. The sunny clear days at this time of year are always lovely......................BUT even nicer when the wind is blowing.

Friday, March 07, 2008

Back on the Water and Back to Blogging

I have been a bit lazy with my blog over the past week - one of the reasons is I like to add a picture to my entries but right now don't have any new ones to add. So this is minus pic.

Well what has happened? Last Saturday went out down at Ghallis which was great cos I haven't been down there for months - at last got a sail in. Wind wasn't terrific - rigged a 6m with the Skate. I would have been more comfortable with a 5.5m but I was enjoying it even though I felt the sail to be enormous. Not used to using such a big sail. After a short while Steve waves me down and says that Chris was stuck outside with a broken mast. Our worst nightmare down at Ghallis being stuck on the outside with broken equipment - open sea with the wind taking you down the coast. Usually a very big swell out there, but since the wind wasn't that great it was just bumpy - but still took a while before finding Chris! Anyhow, we all worked together as a team taking various parts of his gear in with us while Kenneth towed him (very quickly) to the bay round the corner. It was very lucky that I had listned to Anton's 'words of wisdom' and took a spare piece of rope out with me - I also borrowed an uphaul (wind being a bit iffy) from Austin, so I was able to tie Chris' sail to the leeward side of my board really securely and had no problems sailing in with it.

Lesson Learned: ALWAYS CARRY A SPARE PIECE OF ROPE (SOMETIMES NOT EASY TO GET YOUR DOWNHAUL OFF THE EXTENSION) AND ALWAYS CARRY AN UPHAUL WITH YOU (SOMETHING I NEVER DO AND WILL DO SO FROM NOW ON)!

The other bummer that happened Saturday was I stepped on a sea urchin between the island - such a stupid thing to do! Still have a couple of spikes stuck deep inside.

Then Sunday had a quick sail here in the bay. Wind was west and used 5m and 86L board. Didn't sail long - tacks were crap, gybes were ok (my Mistral pro edition a bit too fast for me there on the gybes! Gets a bit out of control sometimes!!)

Had quite a busy week - season is starting for me now with clients arriving each week, but today I am free and its windy. South west so I am going down in the bay for some flat water blasting and general fun.

OK time to go cos messages are coming in fast wanting to know where and what time will be down. So time to go load up my car.

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