So you want to sail, but don't know how.
Or you want to learn, but would rather someone else assume all the responsibility, do all the hard work, get out of the tight spots, and serve the food and fetch the drinks.
As Roseanna Roseannadanna says, if it's not one thing, it's another. Either you're rich or you're poor, if you want a big boat, you got a small boat. . .
In a town like Annapolis that caters to the whims of all kinds of sailors and would-be sailors, there are people like "ann-wallis white" (she prefers small letters).
For $17, she can put you on board a 35-foot sloop for a three-hour day sail out into the middle of Chesapeake Bay. For an additional $2,233 she can arrange an all-inclusive three-day cruise for four on a 64-foot luxury ketch to an enchanted Eastern Shore village like Oxford on the Tred Avon.
And if you really want to test the resources of this young charter yacht consultant in Annapolis/Eastport, press her claims that she can come up with a $300,000-a-week yacht cruise in the Mediterranean.
After all, there are boat rides and there are boat rides.
With September at hand, we're about to be treated to what generally is regarded as the best sailing month on the Bay. Winds will be adequate and abundant, White guarantees, with cool, sunny days and cooler, starry nights. "Brisk," she says, "and for that you need a large, comfortable yacht."
The luxury yachts that she deals with usually spend their winters in the Virgin Islands. Many of them head to New England waters for the summer cruisng season, and are now making the passage south again by way of Annapolis and the Chesapeake. Another major attraction, besides the glorious weather, will be the famed U.S. Sailboat Show being held in October at the Annapolis City Dock.
For those used to cramped cruising aboard 30-footers, eating munchies and sleeping on V-berths ans converted dinettes, the accomodations aboard these luxury Caribbean yachts are most splendid indeed. Meals (included, of course) are gourmet and sleeping arrangements are in private staterooms with private heads and showers.
"One other great advantage," says White, "is that if you have a mind to cruise the islands this winter here is a chance to actually see and maybe even sail on the yacht of your dreams. You don't have to check out the yacht by way of a color brochure. And you actually meet the captain and crew. In person."
Consultant White, of course, claims to have personally checked out many of these yachts by sailing on them. "My job is to make everyone happy, matching the yacht and the crew with the guests and their preferences. Think about it and you'll see how important it is."
Here are a few yachts that she plans to book next month out of Annapolis: ALGERIA, a custom 64-foot cruising ketch designed by Phil Rhoses, has a huge enclosed polot house and two private double staterooms with heads and showers. She charters for $2,250 for a three-day minimum with a maximum of four guests. BLUEJACKET, a 55-foot custom yawl built in Holland by Franz Maas, is sailmaker Ted Hoods ex-Robin, a successful ocean racer that has made several Atlantic crossings. She'll take a minimum of four a day at $760 per day or a maximum of six guests at $630. DOMINAR, a 50-foot Hinckley Sou'wester launched in 1979, is a classic yawl with a dark blue hull and air-conditioning throughout. This yacht, with a light interior of blond wood, is available at $500 per day with a maximum of four guests.
White, along with many other yacht brokers and bareboat (no skippers) charter operations for experienced parties. Working with Mike Murray out of "Charter US" at Pier 7 on the South River, south of Annapolis, they have three boats:
A black-hulled, high-performance Chance 30-30 sloop has all the conveniences of cruising with a roller-furling jib, electric refrigerator and electric head. Able to sleep six comfortably below, she charters for $150 a day with varied rates that go up to $500 for a full week.
The same rates apply to a Bristol 29.9 able to sleep six below and a diesel engine, wheel steering, settee berths and aft galley. The rates for a Tanzer-28 that sleeps five go from $125 for a day sail to $400 for a full week.
Other luxurious visitors may include Vixen II, a 64-foot staysail schooner, and others of the great "White" fleet, many of which are expected to show up between early September and mid-October. In her third-floor quarters at 621 Sixth Street in the Yacht Haven marine complex, white keeps binoculars handy by the glass wall overlooking the busy Annapolis harbor. "When they come in," she says, "I'll know it." She can be reached at 301/263-6366.
On the other hand, if all you're interested in is a three-hour sail or a 9-to-8 full day's sail, there is John Barry's Lady, an Ericson-35 with a roller-furling jib that bareboats in the islands in winter. This is Barry's second successful season in Annapolis opersting with first mate Adam Bernardo, 14.
Barry, a 35-year-old bachelor who has skippered schooners in the Virgins, charges $17 per person (children $10 when accompanied by adults) for three-hour day sails that depart from the Annapolis Hilton at 9, 1 and 5. Reservations are advised; call 301/268-4148.
And if you have a yen to sail into the New Baltimore and the magic Inner Harbor, ring up Werner "ydoc" Janssen at 301/663-7341. Offering quite a sailing bargain, Janssen and his mate operate a 55-foot aft-cabin sloop out of Bodkin Creek at the mouth of the Patapsco River, an ideal cast-off point to cruise the northern Bay. He prefers four guests, but can tak six at $50 per head on a two-day cruise that boards Friday night and returns Sunday evening. Food and drink are not included.