Off Ship Island Light the reefs were shaken out, and at Charley's suggestion a big fisherman's staysail was made all ready for hoisting, and the maintopsail, bunched into a cap at the masthead, was overhauled so that it could be set on an instant's notice.
I was watching the behavior of their boat as the great fisherman's staysail, far, far larger than the top-sail and used only in light breezes, was broken out.
The seafaring folk of Antioch had seen us breaking out topsail and staysail, a most reckless performance in such weather, and had hurried to the wharf-ends in little groups to find out what was the matter.
We took in topsail and staysail, dropped the main peak, and as we got abreast of the principal wharf jibed the mainsail.
As to the seas, they runs more in uppers in the Bay of Biscay, unless it may be in a sow-wester, when they tumble about quite handsomely; thof it’s not in the narrow sea that you are to look for a swell; just go off the Western Islands, in a westerly blow, keeping the land on your larboard hand, with the ship’s head to the south’ard, and bring to, under a close-reefed topsail; or, mayhap, a reefed foresail, with a fore-topmast-staysail
and mizzen staysail
to keep her up to the sea, if she will bear it; and ay there for the matter of two watches, if you want to see mountains.
I pulled till I burst open the ends of all my fingers; and while I pulled, the flying-jib and staysail
split their cloths apart and thundered into nothingness.
The Jessie swung off under her full staysail
, then the foresail, double-reefed, was run up.
In the end he managed to knock both shackles out and raise the staysail
and jib, and the Duchess filled away for the entrance.
Scarcely had we recovered our senses, before the foretopsail went into shreds, when we got up a storm staysail
and with this did pretty well for some hours, the ship heading the sea much more steadily than before.
She was running before the wind - yawing frightfully - her staysail
let down to act as a sort of extra foresail, -" scandalised," they call it, - and her fore-boom guyed out over the side.
The proof of it was that on that very occasion he desired him suddenly after a period of silent pacing, to have all the staysails
sheets eased off, and he was going on with some other remarks on the subject of these staysails
Buying her cheaply on his credit card, he restored her, adding a Code Zero and a new staysail