About a month ago, Ward over at About: Sailing wrote that Sail Training International might be up for a Nobel Prize. Then he goes on to say that "we all know there's no room for nationalistic, socialistic, religious or ethnic ballast when it's humans pitted against sea."
This is mostly true and reminds me of the scene in the Azores tied up six deep on the seawall. To get to the dock, we would have to crawl over Finnish, German, British, Danish and American boats. Pretty cool experience.
But then there were the Norwegians. There were two boats filled with Angry Norwegians. Bearded, angry Norwegians. They made their presence felt for sure. These guys weren't indicative of Norwegians as a whole of course (some of my best friends are Norwegian). But man were they angry.
One of my favorite parts of the Azores was that the little marina cafe had spicy ketchup so I ate untold amounts of french fries to act as scoops for this delicacy. One night, Susannah and I were sitting at the cafe enjoying the Sunset while the Angry Norwegians were sitting on the wall drinking beer and preparing for a night of anger.
The hippy from the tiny little decrepit boat was watching the sunset too. Perhaps he was tired of the Angry Norwegians ogling his hippy girlfriend or perhaps he, too, was Angry but at that moment he had had enough. He laced into them with the absolute best Hippy-tirade of all time, "Hey, you f'in Norwegians, what the F is wrong with you, why aren't you looking at the F'in Sunset?!? It's a beautiful F'in sunset and you're all sitting with your F'in backs to it!" Then another minute of F this and F that and sunset this and sunset that.
This angered the Angry Norwegians and a whole cafe full of sailors thought they were going to have to stop a full-on Angry Norwegian Beatdown. But instead, they unceremoniously picked up the Tirading Hippy, carried him down the dock, and not quite gently deposited him in his cockpit to sleep it off.
If Angry Norwegians can be peaceful in the face of a tirading hippy then this sailing gig might really deserve a Nobel Prize.