Taking a windsurfing session is a gamble with high stakes. You get adrenaline pumping ecstasy if you score; lost time and money if you miss the wind. Yesterday I hit it just right at Carmine Island on the York River.
I happened to sail precisely when the wind was strongest, between 11 am and 1:30 pm, using a tiny, 4.2 meter squared sail. (It was a little windier at Carmine Island than the Coast Guard Station where the wind is measured, but the trend was the same.)
Around noon a flame-orange Volvo station wagon with darkly tinted windows pulled up to the launch site.
It was "Gloucesterfarian" Paul Dovel, the perpetually-stoked windsurfer turned kiter. I helped him set-up his 9 meter squared kite. We barely avoided disaster launching it because 2 of the kite's 4 lines were reversed, sending it into uncontrollable spirals across the water. Paul was yelling, "Please grab it! Oh God, PLEASE PLEASE grab it!" as it lurched towards a rock bulkhead. But I wouldn't go near it until it settled down enough to assuage my legitimate fear of being entangled and strangulated / dismembered by the flailing bridle lines. Yikes! Eventually I did get the kite, Paul fixed the lines, and we rode for a short while before the wind dropped and I went back to work.
1 day ago