Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Shut down the Volume

Close your eyes.
Imagine the breeze beginning to blow.
The snap as the sail billows out and takes hold.
The boat to skim over the water and the only sound is the water as it gently splashes against the bow.

This was the most surprising aspect of sailing.
The quiet.
Its as if the sails form a protective barrier around the boat and its passengers. Allowing only the volume of nature's voice to pass through.
Thoughts quite as the brain listens to the wood and the sails and the wind, waiting for an invitation and then responding to all that the boat needs. 

Power boats may zoom past but their motors are muted drowned out by the flock of water birds who have ignored the silent advance of the sailboat until the vessel is directly upon them. They burst upward with a flourish of flapping wings, an imitation of the sail as it catches the wind and once again moves ahead.

Today, 'V' is for Volume.
Or more accurately, the lack there of.
No motor grinding.
No relentless slap of fiberglass to broken water.
No chatter of those internal voices reminding you of all that life brings.
The peaceful, restful absence of noise.

This has been part of the A to Z Challenge. For more entries click here:


  1. Oh, yes please, I'll have some of that quiet!

  2. Mmm yes.

    I had a part-time job on the Adirondack, a passenger schooner that operates in NY harbor, for 5 summers starting in 2002. The boat had inboard motors, two big Volvos, I think they were (if not Volvo, then some other well-regarded manufacturer); the engine room was well constructed and the noise on deck wasn't bad when we were motoring, passengers could converse easily in a normal tone of voice, frequently not even noticing the hum and vibration until we'd raised the sails and the captain killed the engines. Then, aaaah - folks got to see the magical quiet of a sailing vessel.

    The captain traditionally turned off the engines for at least a few minutes during every sail, even if there was no wind, just to give the passengers that moment. And the boat is a delight to sail, the longer we could run without the motors, the happier we were.

    1. I am always surprised at how wonderful the silence is.

  3. Sounds perfect! I have sailed with my father on San Francisco Bay a couple of times and loved the lack of motor noise. I love how you describe the birds flying with you.

    Emily In Ecuador

  4. Hello from Idaho and stop in from Ramblin. I been on a sale boat a few time and enjoy it.
    Coffee is on

  5. Oh, my word, this sounds heavenly! Husby and I like to take Tall-ship cruises. As far as we’re concerned, it’s the only way to travel! I spend the whole cruise laying out in the nets alongside the Bowsprit. Watching the water flow past. Watching it curl away from the bow of the ship. Having quiet conversations with the figurehead just inches away. It’s a perfect, perfect world!

    1. Sitting up in the bow is the best! There are some cool talk shop cruises in the NorthEast-haven’t been, yet...


Got a Hairnet sighting? Other weirdness?