America does a great job of branding California’s golden sunsets, beach
babes and surfing dudes. Since hearing ‘Californication,’ ‘Everybody goes
surfing, surfing USA,’ and ‘I left my heart in San Francisco’ Cali’ has
been calling. So I was delighted to be rolling in to Long Beach Hollywood-style
aboard the 60ft trimaran from the Kevin Kostner movie special, ‘Waterworld,’
-at least that was the plan!
at the helm, we’re ripping 15-19 knots of boat speed on a close reach
and we’re going to rock right past Pyewacket…nice. Nice, that is
until we were about parallel and the main hull centre emits a crunch.
You know the sound- that ripping branch tearing noise, unique to carbon
that makes your skin crawl. I ease off the pace to a gentle 13 knots,
as an inspection goes on down below. The crew emerge with a shrug. There
is nothing to see and so we sail on tentatively, but the motion of the
boat has changed. It’s lumpy. Then comes that sound again, this time
elongated and more wretched and then that’s it. Up floats the dagger
board. We are in sight of the breakwater of Long Beach. We are two days
from the Sunday start of the Transpac.