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Sailing, with Nancy and the three Chrises!
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Chris and Nancy Haggerty have taken the phrase ‘sailing-family’ to a new level with three generations of Chrises enjoying many sailing adventures aboard the family’s 1977 23’ AMF Paceship.
Chris Snr bought the boat, now named ‘Nancy’s Summer Wind’ in 2004 for just under $3000. And although he sailed as a teenager, 40-years had passed since Chris last handled the lines. He therefore decided to do some light reading prior to his first voyage aboard his new boat.
'Nancy's Summer Wind'
“Just in case, I purchased 'Sailing for Dummies',” Chris said.
With the completed refresher course under his life vest, Chris and Chris number 2 set sail for Long Island from Westport, CT and learned a few more valuable lessons along the way.
“1. Thunderstorms come out of nowhere on Long Island Sound. 2. Always check your fuel before you leave, don't assume the tank was left full and 3. Have Sea Tow or BoatUs before getting on your boat because gas costs about 125.00 per gallon for 3 gallons, (the service charge for a non-member was about 400.00) before you take to sea. And that was in 2004!”
Despite the unexpected schooling Chris Snr was undeterred and together with his wife Nancy, signed up for sailing classes.
“The closest Nancy had been to a boat before that was a Carnival cruise.”
Nancy aboard 'Nancy's Summer Wind'.
These days the competent sailing duo make regular trips around Oyster Bay Harbor and Long Island Sound and stay aboard their boat, which Chris says is “kinda like camping”.
Chris and Nancy had signed up to celebrate this year's Summer Sailstice, however a knee replacement kept Nancy on shore for much of the summer. This left the three generations of Chrises to enjoy several sailing adventures across numerous weekends.
“My grandson loves to tack and that’s his job, to yell it out. I don’t know if that is a hit at nursery school…”
Little-Chris is all smiles aboard his Papa-Chris's boat.
This year, Chris and Nancy won an online sailing course from NauticEd in the annual Summer Sailstice prize draw and are looking forward to completing their course before moving up to a larger boat.
Chris says their sloop rigged, swing keel Paceship is “a nice little boat” with a grill, small stove and portable toilet, however after 15 years he is looking for something larger and with more headroom.
“We want to move up to a 28 to 32’.”
And although most of their sailing has taken place in the northern US waters, the couple has been fortunate enough to enjoy not one but two BVI sailing vacations which, like many people, they say is the best vacation they've ever had.
In the meantime, middle-Chris is planning to create an Instagram account to share photos of the sailors as they live aboard ‘Nancy’s Summer Wind’.
“He thinks people will be interested… I am thinking not, but who knows,” Chris Snr says. “They might get a laugh.”
Will middle-Chris create an Instagram account for Nancy's Summer Wind?
If they do set up the Instagram account it will no doubt be a hit, at the very least among their fellow sailors at the Sagamore Yacht Club in Oyster Bay and the Ponus Yacht Club in Stamford Harbor, CT where Chris and Nancy hold membership.
While 'Nancy's Summer Wind' will spend the coming months out of the water and tucked under her winter blankets, next summer will surely see Nancy and the three Chrises enjoying the sailing aboard their Paceship or perhaps even a new boat.
So if you're sailing in Oyster Bay Harbor or Long Island Sound and happen to see them, make sure you give them a hearty wave and if possible, stop for a good old chat.