Rick,  I just thought I would write some of my impressions and memories of a spectacular week of racing.  Feel free to  pass them on.  Edit as needed,  days at the beginning are a blur...I might have mixed up day with wild spinnaker .

First and formost  were all the great people we met,  starting with the crew and skipper of Aqualicious, Brinehog and Flying Circus and all the  Kincardine Yacht Club Sailors.  They became fast friends over the week,  and hopefully some long term friendships were started between the two  KYC's.

Day One,  Collingwood to Christian Island;   Hmmmm   need to figure out reaching starts,  committee end is a bad place to be,  but a quick circle took us out of harms way,  and the adrenaline was going.  I thought this was supposed to be a  light wind, fun regatta,  but these guy's are serious racers. Every boat has plastic sails, Mylar and Kevlar as far as the eye can see.  Up goes the 3/4 oz chute,  and away we go....we only used the light spinnaker once all week,  it blew over 20 knots every day.  Anchor in the lee of Christian Island, blow up the dingy, and head in to the beach for a BBQ.  Lamb chops over a wood fire are awesome.  Met more of the fleet,  and a  relatively early evening .

Day Two,  Christian Island to 12 Mile Bay.   Another great day of  reaching, a little close at times,  with a few " round-up's"  but no broaches.  We learned how to dump the chute, fast when needed, and Norma learned that a major spinnaker dump requires  a lot of grinding afterwards.  This was the day we ended up with an over-ride in the spin-sheet and the self tailed guy  at the same time....in 18+ knots of wind.  Adrenaline is a great strength enhancer, and I was able to pull out the guy over-ride, and also get the spin sheet pulled back to help get that override out. We sailed up to , and around  Black Rock,  as the race committee could not get up to set the turning mark in time.  While Rick was trying to get the chart plotter to work, depth went from 120'  to 15....so tack, then wait till the other boat goes round the rock and follow. Turns out they had no idea either, but  following seemed safer.  Then head for a very rocky shore. The finish line was tucked right against the shore,  but I just kept steering for where the lead boats had disappeared, and found it.  On the way, we covered Aqualicious to a pass, but the 28 seconds we beat them by were not enough.   We then all  milled around waiting for someone to lead us in to the anchorage at 12 Mile Bay. Through a very narrow passage, well marked with nav bouys, then up this long narrow inlet.  The boat in the lead, who knew the way,  suddenly turned hard to starboard, and headed in to the rocks. I followed,  the 4th in the train,  going exactly where they went, through an un-marked 30 foot wide gap between the rocks ( Rick came up from navigation chores, and I thought his eyes were going to pop, then he steered ).  The anchorage opened up to the most spectacular spot, large enough all 27 racers, 2 committee boats and a few boats who were already there. We had lost our top two battens, so I swam over to Brinehog and borrowed the batten from their sun shade, which we cut to fit our pockets. It was too stiff, but better than no  battens at all. Swimming from boat to boat is how you socialize at anchor,  and the standard is to offer a beer and a towel to swimmers.  We didn't have so much beer, but we had lots of rum.....no one seemed to mind.
Day Three,  12 Mile to Midland.   Another great day's sailing,  with a bit of a rocky start for Norma ( who may never drink rum again).  This was our throw out, let just cruise day, as we sailed into a hole, then stopped there for half an hour while everyone sailed around us.  Eventually we just tacked and sailed all of 100 meters out to the wind line,  tacked again then finished the race.  We had a great spinnaker reach into the bay where Midland is, and Tom was grinning from ear to ear flying the chute and we zoomed along.  We saw some boats have a really hard time with the tight take-down  ( read major broaching going on)  but we kept control, and more important, got it down fast when the wind shifted and picked up.  Gusty shifty north west winds made things interesting.  Sue met us in Midland,  Pizza party in a storage hanger, and Birthday Cake and Champagne at the boat after.

Day Four,  Midland to Beckwith Island.  I guess north winds are shifty everywhere.  We had to sail out from Midland bay, and it became obvious that with 20 degree shifts going on,  we needed to tack often.  I  took over the helm, while Rick did the grinding on the many tacks we did.  We kept up well this way, and had one of our good results.  Local knowledge seemed to favour the shore, so that's where we went, and it worked.   Eventually we turned  and had a really long white sail reach over to Beckwith....hours of  constant trimming ( remember that 20 degree shift thing).  Norma and Sue did a great job,  trimming the big genoa, while I played the main.  The anchorage at Beckwith had a strange reflected bounce, at 90 degrees from the wind,  making for a rocky night, but  we were nice and close to the next days start  ( who ever thought  9:20  am was a good time to start sequence should have been shot ).

Day Five,  Around Beckwith, Around Hope Island, down to  Christian.  An interesting day of close island navigation and playing the shifts.  We finally started to get the hang of the fleet  ( follow Sandpiper, they know where to go) ,  and I finally figured out the chart plotter and  computer navigation. The race was short, so we were finished by 1ish ( as we were most days ).  Early finishes can lead to long parties.  We  finished the race, downed the sails, turned on the Beach Boy's CD, loud and danced, much to the amusement of the fleet. We anchored back in the lee of Christian Island,  and then had the afternoon ahead of us.  Sue and Norma swam over to the beach for a walk, while I swam  down wind to go visiting  ( Rick was reading email).  It was a long swim, but once I got there, I visited with all of the boats from Kincardine,  getting  vodka coolers or water from each one , standing in the sun to warm up, then jumping in the water to cool off...repeat as needed.  Eventually  Rick came visiting too, but the wind had shifted, so he had a long swim up wind ( I guess I picked the wind shift better that day).  After more visiting, we had said our good-byes and headed back, when here comes the dingy with Sue and Norma,  in pirate gear to board Brinehog.  They captured some crew, and eventually headed back to Dragon for  shrimp on the BBQ.  People kept arriving all evening, eventually there were 12 people  on the boat,  dancing away, and singing along.  Yet another bottle of rum, and stars from horizon to horizon....one of my favorite memories of the week.

Day Six,  Christian Island to Meaford.   Longest race of the week,  but great winds.  We nailed the reaching start,  taking the lowest position, reach up the line then turn down and start.  Spinnakers up right after the start,  Sandpiper's went up sideways.  Tight reach, getting tighter, so down comes the chute, and it's a fetch over to Meaford, in big waves and great wind. We stayed high, as the forecast was for the wind to go north , and eventually it shifted enough to put the chute up.  We were in a great spot,  a little higher than our competitors, and really more able to carry close than they were, eventually surfing down on the leaders. We tied with the Abbot 33 for 2nd that day, our best finish all week.  Meaford is a great harbour,  with excellent  showers and laundry ,  Matt, the 15 year old punk who raced on Brinehog had a funny story about having to bath under the bath-tub type spout after he hung his back-pack over the directions for turning it into a shower.  It was typical Matt, and we laughed so hard.  The Local rotary club put on a fish fry that night in a pavilion not far from the harbour, which was great, plenty of food, lots of people from the town.  The long week of racing is starting to be felt in every muscle, and after the race I was totally  exhausted.  A nap helped to bring my energy back, and all the great food helped too.

Day Seven, Meaford to Thornbury.  The only day of light wind all week,  we stalled in a hole during maneuvers before the start,  ended up starting 14 minutes late.  The race was shortened outside Thornbury harbour, needless to say our result was less than spectacular.  In to the harbour,  and I guess our party reputation had proceeded us,  they radioed us a change in our place as they put us in isolation  over with Brinehog, away from the rest of the fleet.  It was actually great for the change over, as we could park the car right beside the boat.  The only draw-back was the 3 ft climb up to the dock.  Final banquet and prize giving at a local restaurant, and  lots of hugs and exchanging email and phone numbers, and invites to come back next year.  It was by far the most fun I have had at a regatta,  and if I can get back, I'll be there again next year.

                                                                                Cheers, Laura