11/11/14 - Aloft

Aloft

By Valerian Clerc

Going Aloft

As I sat idly in the main salon making a twine Turks head, Captain Tom walked up, asking me if I was on watch (no) and if I was in the middle of some work (also no). I thought that he was going to tell me to clear out and make room for the active watch, but instead he told me to follow him onto the deck. When he told me to put on a harness, it slowly dawned on me that I (along with Burke) was going to go aloft. Burke went up first, and I followed, belayed by the topsail halyard. The beginning was easy, but the higher I got the sketchier the shrouds became, thinning and shaking wildly. Once I reached the cross trees, I had to crawl between two boards, unclip and re-clip. The view from the top of the main mast was astounding. I could see the entire Roseway from above and the perspective was surreal. I could also see the horizon, which stretched on for miles on end. Meanwhile, the entire mast shook with the slightest gust of wind or waves. This was definitely the experience of a lifetime, and probably one of the coolest things I’ve ever done.

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