This past week we sailed with a 73 year-old British Navy sailor. He was a chap that Harry and I were immediately drawn to. Everything about him was calming. His accent. His presence. With the smoothing voice of an audio book reader, he narrated our daily journey calling out yacht speeds and wind speeds, all in knots of course. Any changes in wind direction were immediately called out. When departing or arriving from port, he moved with the agility of a young recruit and we were amazed at his balance and speed aboard deck.
Every evening, while at dock in the marinas, we found ourselves eager to sit with him to reflect on the day events. He always shared the best stories, with a humorous wit that made us wish that we didn’t only have one week to share together.
One night, he looked off to the sea and shared with us his thoughts influenced by a life of sailing. With his hand extended out to the water, he asked us, “Do you know why I love this? It’s because, with the sea, no two waves are ever the same.” He then went on to further elaborate the beauty of experiencing life spent under the sails.
As we wrap up a fortnight of living aboard a yacht as first time sailors, we now have a deeper appreciation for his message.
Sailing is unpredictable. It keeps you on edge. A sailor is constantly assessing all of the factors and elements that contribute to a successful, enjoyable sail. Your situation is in a constant state of change, and therefore, so are you as a sailor. Sailing teaches flexibility and warrants fluidity with an ever-changing sea. These are essential skills, not only required for sailing, but also in how you approach living life.
However, as much as sailing often requires great focus, it also allows for undeniable freedom. This week, we were introduced to the feeling of standing at the helm, powering a great yacht, with only the winds needed to carry us to yet another dreamy destination. When you experience it, you understand why so many have dedicated so much of their life to sailing the open sea.
We’ve been documenting life aboard a 52 foot sailing yacht as first time sailors. Stay tuned as we share our adventure of a lifetime. Interested in taking your own sailing holiday? Check out Seafarer Cruising and Sailing Holidays.