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Almost Around the Cape and Why I am Sailing Around the World?

Monday, February 22, 2010

I'll start with the good news, or I should say the best news, as there isn't any bad news today. Now only 120nm till we pass under Cape Agulhas (I've been saying the Cape of Good Hope but the most southern point of Africa is actually Cape Agulhas) and can officially tick off another Cape!


The wind dropped off a little today and with it Ella's Pink Lady's great pace too. But we are moving nicely still and for the first time in over a week it was warm and sunny. After misty drizzle and grey skies for so long, sunshine feels particularly lovely! As there's a high pressure system passing over us at  the moment, it looks like the calm sailing (fingers crossed that it's not too calm!) will last for a while yet.


So anyway, while sitting out in the sunshine and hand steering today, I did a bit of thinking (dangerous thing to do I know!). Seeing as we're now over half way around the world, I thought it might be a good time to have a bit of a re-think about exactly what I am doing out here and whether or not my expectations have changed at all.


When I first dreamt of sailing around the world, the first thing that caught my attention, was curiosity about whether or not it was even something that was achievable. It wasn't so much the action and adrenaline parts that appealed to me, but thinking about all the details and finding ways to minimize the risks. I wanted to challenge myself and achieve something to be proud of. And yes, I wanted to inspire people. I hate that so many dreams never actually become anything more than that, a dream. I'm not saying that everyone should buy a boat and take off around the world, but I hope that by achieving my own dream, I'm showing people that it is possible to reach their own goals, whatever they might be and however big or small.


Now that I'm out here, I'm also finding that a big part of it is just about having fun and making the most of every day. And the other amazing thing is that it's no longer just my dream or voyage. Every milestone out here isn't just my achievement, but an achievement for everyone who has put so much time and effort into helping getting me here.


Also, I'd like to say that I'm not doing this to prove a point, but that wouldn't be completely true. For almost 6 years my family lived on our motor boat travelling and based at different marinas on the east coast of Australia. When you live on the water, it's sort of like an unwritten law that when another boat is pulling in, you stop to give a hand and take their lines. But being a 'little girl' meant that more often than not, my offer of help would be completely ignored, while the line was passed to the fully grown man next to me. I found this incredibly frustrating as I knew that I was just as capable of handling the lines as anyone else. I hated being judged by my appearance and other people's expectations of what a 'little girl' was capable of.


So yes, I hope that part of what I'm doing out here is proving that we shouldn't judge by appearance and our own expectations. I want the world to know exactly what 'little girls' and young people are actually capable of!


But enough of that, on another subject I managed to cut my knee on something today. A little bit of blood (pink and red do not look good together!). But nothing at all too serious, which made me realize how well I have done so far with the health and injury side of things. All the salt water has never once given my skin any grief (not hard to guess why not - thanks to Ella Bache!) and as time goes on I'm even managing to give myself less bruises.


Everyone's been telling me about Torah Bright and her amazing gold medal effort in snowboarding for Australia at the winter Olympics. I know I'm a bit behind the times, as news sometimes takes a while to reach me out here, but I'm just going to say wow and congratulations to Torah!


Ok, that's more than enough for today. I'm really not doing a very good job of pacing myself am I?!



Pic 1: Shorts, sunshine and hand steering (make that foot/ leg steering!) with a book at 40 south! This picture is dedicated to all those people who enjoy teasing me about all the lovely fresh food they're eating, a little payback!

Pic 2: Steering with my hand this time, and enjoying the warm weather!!


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