The first thing he checks online each day is not his email, not the news, but the weather… specifically, the wind. In fact, the chart that NOAA produces that shows, by hour, the wind speed (with direction and gusts), the temperature (with wind chill and dew point), the humidity (with potential for precipitation and sky cover), and thunder and rain predictions is constantly on display or minimized on his computer screen. Once this information covering the next several days has been closely inspected, he can attend to other things.
The second order of business is checking his email inbox for communications from other sailors, coaches, his sailing students, or yacht club members that may need a response. He then generates his own email, invariably related to sailing. After that, he reads his favorite sailing blogs and perhaps checks out the news on MSN.
After breakfast, if he doesn’t have any boat repairs or maintenance to deal with, he may type out a post to his own sailing blog or work on coaching plans for an after school practice session or meet for his high school sailing team. There are regatta invitations and van reservations to be made, trophies to be ordered and picked up, students, parents, athletic directors and other coaches to inform, attendance and medical forms to be tracked, and rainy day lessons, student pairings, meet schedules, and practice drills to be planned. Everything must be coordinated with his co-coach, and schedules and meet results must be recorded on the high school sailing website and communicated to the league director. Fortunately, the co-coach handles all the news articles about the team that must be written.
About four afternoons a week and one day most weekends in the spring, his time is dedicated to the business of coaching the team through a practice session or a competition. Many meets are held at other schools and often the kids must travel in vans 30 minutes to an hour each way for an away event. The sailing coaches, unlike the coaches of some other sports, drive the vans themselves. (Because they get qualified to drive the vans, they are frequently asked to drive other sports teams to meets in their vast leisure time.) If they are out at an away meet past 6:30 pm, the team sometimes stops for pizza on the way back to town. It is typical for the weary coach to arrive home between 6:30 and 7:30 pm.
When he isn’t actively involved in coaching, he is sailing in a local yacht club race, he is taking a course on sailing or boating safety, he is sailing in some other yacht club’s sponsored races, he is reading sailing magazines or books by experts on sailing tactics, he is sailing in a regional regatta, he is working on one of his many small sailboats, or he is sailing by himself on the lake across the street.
Golf widows have nothing on me.
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