A most beautiful morning this morning brought lots of people down to Sailability.

First of all, the lovely volunteers felt that they had to rig every boat in sight, as we had bookings from 30 people with a disability. Tony, David G, Helene, Kevin, Julie, David W, Crosbie, Denis, Jack and Vince slaved away until every boat was down from the racks, expertly rigged, and in the water.

We had a small drama with the radio this morning, as it had been affected by the wetting it received on Australia Day. David W managed to rig it to the batteries from Alan Wood, so that we were able to use it until Phill arrived and we swapped the batteries back into his boat. This meant using the hand-helds. This problem has now been fixed by the purchase of a new 12 volt power supply for our two way transmitter radio.

Crosbie became the Sailing Coordinator, David W the Boat Operations Manager, Helene the Pontoon Manager. Ralph went across to pick up Charlie’s Chariot and soon filled the boat with observers Ray, Nancy, Jonathon, Sue. Evelyn arrived to become the first sailor on the water, with Ollie as the first participant sailor, and Megan to take her favourite role of registrar.

Next little incident was the hosing of the life-jackets because they were not smelling very fresh after their wetting on Australia Day. However, because of the heat in the day, they soon dried, and were fresh and clean for the sailors.

Soon all the 303’s were filled with sailor and crew, Kevin arrived to give his usual reliable hand on the pontoon, John was helping up on the deck with life-jackets and morning teas. Sailors from the first were: Jack, Ewan, Ivan, Evelyn, Vince, Jackie, Josh, with Alan in Clea, and later on, Phill in Alan Wood. What an incredible sight for the ferry passengers.

More helpers arrived. Lyn to take over the time-keeper role, a most important chore this morning, with a heavy booking list and very light winds; Barnabas worked his butt off on the pontoon, catching, tying up. Loading and unloading passengers and pushing away. Nic started on the deck, then took over an observer and towing role on Charlie’s Chariot

Participant sailors this morning were: Kerrie, Annalise, Jessica and Ginny from Ben Love; Vanessa, Judy, then Kerri, and Ashley from Washington. Then BIRDS: Roger, Stuart, Carlo, Dirk, Robert, May, Daniel, Danielle, Steve. Last of all, from the community were Craig, Jonny, Matthew, Luca, Vanessa and Denis. But wait, one more group arrived from Maroubra; Archie and the gorgeous Alan. A cast of thousands.

Of course, some of the sailors fatigued in the heat and light winds, so there was some chopping and changing. This is where we needed Helene and John. Alice and Jason came down later on to help with the putting away, and we also had help from some of the MYC dad’s who were waiting around to get their own kids on the water. Thanks, MYC.

A very special thanks to Helen, today’s chef, who worked in the heat to create a delicious barbecue lunch for all the hungry customers. Also thanks to all the carers who helped with their own, and others, participants to make the day go smoothly.