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nomads away day to portland - 12/8/2001

The weekend started for us on Thursday night. We left Bristol with the mobile phone on, ready to provide up to the minute weather reports. Nobody did ring, so we assume nobody had the correct number. However, no news is good news and it didn't stop a big turn out on Sunday.

Friday morning and the harbour was like a millpond, no surprise there, we do tend to have an effect on the wind. By early afternoon the wind was on the way and Richard put on his full wetsuit, followed very gingerly by Jen in her shortie. The son in law was impressed by the sheer bravery and this made up for the lack of expertise on the rig.

Saturday bright and early, well early anyway and the number of nomads present doubled with the arrival of Mike and Pierrette. They staked their claim on the boat yard and disappeared into their camper van for breakfast.

We were set up on the beach and could see Mike rigging up a variety of sails ready for the off. Obviously he decided as the wind looked set for the day, he'd wait a bit for the tide and after a couple of hours both Mike and Pierrette were on the water. As we'd had a head start on them, they were still on the water when we called it a day and left for our caravan site. Richard had been in the water early, he'd had us up and eating breakfast by 7.30 and down on the beach by 8.30.

Sunday the wind was blowing, there was a bit of rain and sea mist and also a great turn out of around 14 Nomads, this number increased by four more in the afternoon. I apologise now if I have got any names wrong, anybody with the wrong partner, or if I have left anybody out. Being a novice with both the Nomads and also being lousy at putting names to faces, it was a big mistake asking me to write up the Portland outing.

Ian and Neroli had lent a board and rig to two new comers, Nancy and Neil, recently returned from a trip to Greece and finding the temperature of the water slightly different.

Brian lent Richard a smaller sail and mast and at one point, on one of his many graceful!!!! dismounts he thought he was going to make the sail smaller by just missing it with his feet. He was put to good use though, Brian and Mike used him as a marker to practice their gybes around. He said he now knows what it must feel like to be circled by a couple of hungry sharks.

As there was a large turn out, Martin suggested he take a photo call of the group and Mike went round to advise everybody to be on the beach by 2pm for a group photo. Everybody except Mike made it by 2pm, he did arrive with a sort of flourish about ten minutes late. Justine (son in law) took the group photo, so I hope it comes out.

photo of a group of Nomads at Portland

It was then decided it would make a good photo, if everyone did a bit of synchronised sailing and a large number of Nomads headed for their boards (you'll have to ask one of the lot who went to Egypt, what a group of nomads is collectively called) Neil had the camera thrust into his hands and sat on the beach, poised waiting for the synchronised display to commence. He thought he had the first Nomad in his sights and took his first snap, then he decided he may have been a bit premature, as he wasn't convinced the chap on the board was a Nomad, so when the pictures arrive, the first one may have to be titled, 'The Unknown Wind Surfer'

photo of the unknown sailor photo of Nomads sailing at Portland Another photo of Nomads at Portland - closer in.

the unknown sailor (just for jenny!)

the group sets out....

...but not all arrive in the lull!!

Adrian, (I think it was Adrian, though I am not convinced it wasn't Nigel), did his good deed for the day when he saw a board and rig drifting out to sea. With no thought for how far he would have to swim, he dived into the water and went to the rescue. He did wonder, whilst on the way back, if he would be met by an irate wind surfer, thinking his gear was in the process of being stolen. I didn't find out if he found the rightful owner, but as far as I know everyone was accounted for. He was heard to comment the kit didn't belong to a Nomad, as it was very poorly rigged. Also none of the Nomads would have let their kit float out to sea.

I think everyone agreed it had been a good weekend sailing. We were certainly surprised by the wind, we usually find it has a tendency to disappear whenever we decide to have a go and if we had listened to the weather forecast, prior to the weekend, we may have missed out on a good time.

I would have liked to have included a little bit about the other Neil, Martyn, Carl, Sam, Beth, Al, Chris, Lianne and Nigel and anybody else I have missed out, but I didn't manage to catch up with everybody, but I dare say I will over the coming months.

This was our first trip out with the Nomads, since joining, apart from the visits to various local drinking establishments and we enjoyed it. I must admit I was surprised to see Nomads sailing, I thought they just sat in a pub every few weeks and talked windsurfing and I have now been put firmly in my place. I look forward to our next outing.

Jenny Jones

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