What they were thinking

What they were thinking: Sailboats converge after Figawi race

After the finish of the Figawi race, sailboats converge into the jetties heading for Nantucket as the ferry ‘‘Nantucket’’ leaves Hyannis, May 26, 2012.

Stan Grossfeld/Globe Staff

After the finish of the Figawi race, sailboats converge into the jetties heading for Nantucket as the ferry ‘‘Nantucket’’ leaves Hyannis, May 26, 2012.

Every Sunday, Boston Globe photographer Stan Grossfeld asks the subject of one of his photos to explain what's happening in the shot.

Who's up today: Denis Yannatos, aboard Calypso, and Captain John Hanson, aboard the ferry Nantucket, after the finish of the Figawi race when sailboats converged into the jetties heading for Nantucket on May 26, 2012.

Yannatos: “Basically, you just stay out of their way. They are not going to move. You get squeezed. If I’m going to hit something, I’m going to hit a sailboat rather than the ferry. It’s a little dicey because you can’t put on the brakes and stop. Everybody’s head is on swivel, making sure no one’s coming down on you and you’re not moving into anybody else’s track. Oh yeah, and as this is Figawi, the other thing on everybody’s mind is, ‘Hurry up, so we can get to the party tent and start drinking!’ ’’


Hanson: “It’s basically all hands on deck when the fog is thick. You’re blowing the whistle and using the appropriate hand signals - not that a lot of them know the signals anyway. It’s nuts, it’s nuts. If you’re in the channel, there’s a pecking order. Most of these people don’t know the rules, and if they do know, they don’t exhibit them. They’re trying to win a race or be a hotshot on their boat with all their guests. It’s a difficult situation. When I look out there and see those boats and that fog, I say, ‘Well, we are going to earn our money today.’ On the Nantucket, I’m the equivalent of four stories up. It’s very tense, but I enjoy those views and those moments because not a lot of people in the world get to see it from my perspective.’’

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