Our Maiden skipper, Liz Wardley, is a remarkable tactical start wizard. She is an unbelievable salty sea dog, having sailed around the world three times. I imagine she birthed out of the womb saying, "Prepare to tack." Athletic and robust in stature yet agile and nimble up the mast like a monkey. Liz was fearless, competitive, gutsy, serious at times, yet quiet with stealthy calculated planning when she sails.
The crew becomes close not only because we depend on each other, but through shared experience. We wake each other up, we cook for each other, we tell awful jokes in the middle of the night. We learn preferences and support each other when we’re just not feeling it.
I joined hoping to deepen my sailing experience, and while that has been a huge part of the trip so far, I'm realizing now that many of the lessons aboard Maiden aren't specific to sailing and I am incredibly grateful for those as well.
Since reaching the tropical latitudes it has abruptly become stiflingly hot! Occasional squalls meant a ton of sail changes. Our crew on board for this leg has meshed very well, and it’s fun to throw in all these manoeuvres as a team. We are also taking this opportunity to fine tune our crossover chart which shows us when to use which sail.
Finally the day arrived to depart Seattle. I was excited to be going for my first offshore experience! After a moving speech by the skipper of the “Sail like a Girl” team, Jeanne Goussev, and songs from Voices Northwest Chorus (Snohomish County’s all women a cappella chorus) we were off! Motoring away in the bright sunshine with the Seattle Skyline behind us – beautiful! “Sail Like a Girl” and several other boats escorted us for a while then waved good bye. …