I've met him for the first time on the 3-day voyage of sail training ship I have boarded(and was badly sea-sicked!) 2 years ago. He and his 3 friends own a small sailing yacht with 2 sails and often enjoy short cruise(so he said), and recently he kindly invited me and my friends for a cruise across Suruga-Bay. Their yacht is moored in Shimizu port, Mr.Yamakawa's plan was that leaving Simizu in Saturday morning, sailing across Suruga-Bay to Matsuzaki and staying one night there, then on Sunday sailing back to Shimizu. It might be about 5 hours cruise for one-way, he and one of other owners will steer the yacht, we three and Mr.Yamakawa's other friend will be the passengers.
We had had mostly fine weather recently, but unfortunately only about Saturday the weather forecast warned of bad weather - rather strong rain and some wind. But on Sunday it would become fine. So... we passengers were so ignorant of the sea-weather, wore the poncho or raincoats and boarded the yacht.
During the first 1 hour after departure it was wonderful. Though it was cloudy with light rain sometimes the sea was very calm and we enjoyed our lunch on the deck. But after lunch the sea became rough, it began to rain and blow...
Later Mr.Yamakawa and Mr.Sano(another owner of the yacht, the captain for this cruise) said that usually they NEVER cruise on such weather, but they did not want to disappoint us the guests and decided to go.
The second half of the cruise was... yeah, it's really rough. It rained sometimes very heavily, and the wind and waves were really high. It's a kind of weather with which small yacht could be shipwrecked (so I heard later). One of my friends got seasick soon and had fallen on the sofa in the cabin, but the rest of the passengers could not move to the cabin because of too much rolling and pitching. I have been on the bench of the lee side, clinging to the rope of the jib sail and moving up and down with the hull to avoid the sea-sickness. Still I felt terrible, actually except the captain Mr.Sano all of us - even Mr.Yamakawa too - were seasick. Later Mr.Yamakawa said it was the first time for him to throw up because of the seasickness during his almost 40 years experience at sea. Waves were dark grey and high, they seemed higher than the top of the mast, the yacht often listed by almost 45 degrees(so it seemed). And because of the heavy rain we soaked, on the bench of the windward my friend and Mr.Sano were splashed with sea water (and he shouted the water was warm).
I felt so cold, and so busy to try to move with hull & not get seasick that seldom have fear, I just a bit scared when Mr.Sano said the yacht could not keep the speed even at full throttle. Later he said he has been afraid of that he might have to return to Shimizu or other accessible port because he could not see the land of the destination in the rain and mist, he had to move the yacht away from the land for the safety for some times.
It was really a tough experience, but at the same time I somehow enjoyed this. Many times I have read about or seen the sea storms in books or films, and this rough passage made me imagine & understand how they were really vividly. And at the beginning of this rough weather I saw a dolphin - it jumped from the water and showed its whole body just once maybe about 30m ahead of our yacht. It's beautiful!
At last, we arrived at a small port of Matsuzaki. We soaked and exhausted, dragged ourselves to the nearby lodging Mr.Yamakawa has booked. First of all we took a hot spring bath at the hotel then felt refreshed at last...
(to be continued...)