Last Dance

The Romans adapted the Greek word, ios, to describe the poisonous venom of snakes and first coined the word ‘virus’ that we use today. Corona meanwhile was originally used in Latin to describe a wreath of flowers that across the ancient world were placed on the heads of statues eventually leading Roman citizens to mention the wreaths colloquially as crowns.



Well, whatever the history or derivation of Coronavirus I’ve managed to succumb to it and it’s hit like a train. What started as ‘just a summer head cold’ descended pretty rapidly into a bed ridden exhausted state as my double-jabbed immune system goes to work on beating off Covid-19 and its debilitating effects.

I was dinghy sailing on Saturday evening. I was enjoying blast reaching out from the beach in a lovely force three, gusting four, with my new radial rig set on the Laser (so much easier to sail) and getting a good jet blast of spray on the flood tide wave patterns. I could have stayed out there forever. I felt better than fine and my blocked nose cleared in an instant. It didn’t feel like a last dance.

But waking up the next day, the cold didn’t go – it had got worse. I literally couldn’t smell anything. Nothing. Nada. And by lunchtime I couldn’t taste a single thing. So I did the right thing, excused myself, drove home with the dog and took a test. It was positive.



Sleep in self-isolation is now the order of the day. I’ve felt better but ploughing on through. The days morph into one and I’m relentlessly hot, tossing and turning and fading in and out of sleep. I know that I’m lucky to live in a country with a first-class vaccine programme and I’m grateful for the bright sparks that moved so quickly to create and distribute them. If this had happened six months’ ago, I may well have ended up in hospital. Touch wood, I will avoid that.

Even more annoying is that I’ve had to cancel my entry to the Royal Southampton Yacht Club’s Double-Handed race to the West Princessa buoy off Bembridge and back to Cowes this Saturday. I was looking forward to that one. I’d even bought a new tiller. I’ll be back for the Nab Tower double in mid September. And I’m also missing the third race of the Autumn series in the Laser at Gurnard Sailing Club. Rats. How many discards do we get?

However, on the bright side, I’ve spent the few waking hours of my day surfing the net and watching anything sailing related. And yesterday I was thrilled to see, bang on cue, the latest video of Shirley Robertson and Henry Bromby doing the Rolex Fastnet Race.

It’s 18 minutes of fabulously produced footage that captures the race brilliantly. I actually bumped into Shirley on Saturday after my Laser blasting at Gurnard SC and we chatted (at a safe distance thankfully) about how tough it was and the toll that doing it double-handed takes. She’s an utter inspiration and I urge you to watch the video at the end of this and enjoy. First class reporting from my sailing hero and an incredible result in the race.

As for the blog, I’ll be back as soon as I can. Might just take a few days off now as writing even this brief entry is exhausting.

Back soon.

10 thoughts on “Last Dance

  1. Hi Magnus, we haven’t met in person but you have shared lots of thoughts and words. Get well and back on the water. As a fellow Masters Radial (sorry ILCA 6) sailor we will have to meet on the start line some day. I can appreciate the effort you put into rule69, I write a Laser Newsyletter for our fleet and those beyond and know full well it takes a bit to try and be creative and informative. Keep it up and best wishes from Alberta, Canada.

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