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My Love For Sailing

Text by: Myles Steimle

© Myles Steimle
Some of my favorite memories come from my adventures with boats. I remember being a young kid traveling down to Ensenada, Mexico for our annual Steimle Family reunions. My grandpa had a small trailer that housed the kids of all six families. Our beds were packed in like sardines, and we would stay up half the night reliving our adventures from the day before on the water, most of which took place on my aunt's "Hobie Cat," a two pontoon sailboat, that with the right wind would tip you to about a 45-degree angle and get moving to about 12 knots. It was exciting jumping off the boat, being dragged by one of the sailing lines, and then playing "navy seal" to hoist yourself back to the top.

After some years, my immediate family purchased a condominium on the water in the Coronado Cays in San Diego. With the condo came a dock and a small, 22-foot boat called "Chinese Firedrill." That was the first boat I really learned to sail on. My dad would let me take it out in the San Diego bay with friends to anchor out in the water and sleep overnight. It was kind of an adventure to wake up and see whether you were still anchored or if you had drifted over into the shipping lanes. We had lots of funny experiences on that boat, and it is surprising we didn't sink it.

© Myles Steimle

Just prior to graduating from high school, my dad, brothers, and I made a trip to Catalina on a charter boat. We fell in love with having a larger boat. So after a lot of thought, my dad purchased a 45-foot "Hunter," which allowed us to take trips out to the local islands off the coast of California. We also entered the "Newport to Ensenada," race, which gave us a firsthand introduction of the difference between "salty sailors" and high-class sailboats. Sailing a bigger boat includes a lot more technicalities than is required by a smaller boat. Moreover, being out on open water required much more attention to detail, thereby causing more stress and anxiety. But once we were comfortable, it afforded the opportunity to do and see a lot more than I could in a smaller boat.

© Myles Steimle

Now that I'm a little older and have kids of my own, it is a whole different thrill. We still have the 45-foot "Hunter," and it's fun to take friends, family, or just the kids out to Catalina or other local islands. Catalina is a special place when you are moored out on boat. There is nothing like jumping off the boat to bathe or taking a raft boat through the island coves while looking for a cool dive spot with your kids. I love socializing with other boats in the harbor; going in to shore to watch a movie in the old playhouse while eating "Olaf's" ice cream; reading a book while hanging from a hammock tied to the boom; chasing playful dolphins at the bow of the boat; fishing for your dinner from the same chair you sail in; watching your brother surface from the water with 10 lobsters and then BBQ'ing them over a 14-inch grill at the stern of the boat while watching the most amazing sunset… and of course, Island music is playing the entire time. This is the quality of life that is hard to match.