Despite the fact that we now operate an 'open door' policy every weekend to encourage
potential new members to drop in, we still hold our annual Open Weekend.
This year we had the added complication of being required by Thames Water to keep
the green road gate closed and locked at all times but we overcame this and at 10.30am
on the 16th the doors opened.
The night before the weather looked grim with the wind WSW 8 gusting 15 and raining.
The forecast said 30%-40% chance of rain over the weekend with continuing gusty conditions.
Not what you would want to take visitors out in so we rigged a variety of dinghies,
brewed some coffee and sat back and awaited events.
It was VERY gusty for most of the day but the rain held off. Discretion meant that
we didn't take any of the nine families that dropped by out sailing. We did however
get a few of them out for a ride in the safety boat.
Several of our own members turned up in the afternoon and took the Pico's out. One
of them, with three up, then started their own capsize drill, which they repeated
several times much to the amusement of those in the clubhouse. The young seemingly
just don't feel the cold!
Weather wise Sunday started with a downpour that soaked those of us that had arrived
early to open up. It brightened up before midday and although there was a good breeze
it wasn't as gusty as Saturday to start with. We had three Bosun's and Dave's day
sailor in use and for a while they were all quite busy.
However, by mid to late afternoon the wind did get up and things got 'interesting'
again, to the point that we had to stop taking visitors out in the dinghies. We had
seven or eight families down on Sunday, which given the early morning conditions,
was not bad really.
Again we had a variety of our younger members out in Pico's, weather conditions don't
seem to bother them, although for most of the day we had both safety boats out on
the water keeping a very close eye on them.
Thanks to all the helms who took the visitors out for a sail; also to the ladies
who manned the galley and also provided lunch and afternoon tea. To the bar staff
and Joan and George who greeted all the visitors and made sure they received all
the information about the club that they required.
It was also nice to see so many members down over the weekend, the old clubhouse
was really buzzing at times. That might not seem important but it does give visitors
a good feeling to see a friendly, well used club in action. Hopefully that was the
same reason you joined Aquarius.
Mike (Over Easy) Baker
Keith Hatton in a Bosun with John Tomkins grand children Picture by John Tomkins