Sideways Sally

Funniest Things Sailors Say

OMOO on the dock in Lund, British Columbia.

Meeting up with boats, and getting to know the crew makes for interesting times in the cockpit.

One sunny afternoon we meet boat #1, an American sailboat setting out on an adventure to Alaska. We’re anchored in a beautiful harbor inside the Canadian border, all enjoying getting to know each other, as boaters do.

An American Skipper pipes up about “not using the VHF radio while in Canadian Waters.” He claims that while researching for a previous trip in 2019 that he learned Americans were prohibited from using the VHF while transiting Canadian waters. I quickly reached for “Sailing Directions” and turned the page to information on VHF. It clearly stated VHF radios are internationally used as the main form of communication, especially used for safety.

Maybe he misunderstood the part where 16, the main channel cannot be used for chit chat? I’m thinking that the next time I see this boat I’ll lean out of the cockpit and yell as loud as I can, “Is everything OK?” while talking to my other boating neighbors on the VHF.

On another day, the Skipper on Canadian sailboat #2 pipes up with new information on how shell beaches got there. He claims that seals eat so many shellfish that they are the cause of the white beaches that dot the North West Pacific Islands. When I countered that they are “middens” which come from centuries of First Nations People harvesting shell fish he remained adamant that it’s from the seals.

All I could do was picture the seals swimming by the beach and spitting the shells up on the beach, since shells don’t float they must be able to spit a very long way!!

I’m giggling inside when the skipper from boat #3 enthusiastically describes how the trees along the ocean are so evenly trimmed because the fish are eating them. This came as a big surprise to the forestry engineer in the group. He kindly explained how saltwater is too harsh for the trees and they cannot grow below the high tide mark.

I can’t wait for the next time I meet up with new boaters and learn so many new things!

6 replies on “Funniest Things Sailors Say”

Hahaha, was entertaining (and enlightening) to read this… The world is never without: rumors, conspiracy theories, supestitions, mumblings, grunting and other forms of noise…

So true! Glad you enjoyed the read. Is there an update on boat progress? Have a great weekend.

What an entertaining post! Thanks for the giggles and the visuals. I can imagine you trying to keep a straight face as they say some of these things! Haha. Love it!

I wish I could keep a straight face, haha. Glad you enjoyed the read.

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