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Reluctant Spouses and Sailing Regrets

Southern Yacht Club, New Orleans

I really enjoyed talking about Holding Fast to an interested audience of sailors the other night at the Southern Yacht Club, including couples who were hoping to take off cruising themselves one day, and women who sailed and raced their own boats. They had great questions, such as whether, as the spouse of a lifelong sailor who agreed reluctantly to the voyage, I regretted going. 


When John and I first lived on an old, leaky Fire Island ferryboat in our twenties and I told people that I'd never been on the water before I met John, they were surprised and puzzled as to why I would agree to live in a chilly New England harbor with only a Franklin stove for heat and few amenities. Surely, part of it was the power of new love, but it was also the adventure, taking a leap to something so different and romantic. When we sailed off on Laughing Goat, I hated leaving my secure life in Connecticut and was terrified of sailing out of sight of land. I was excited, though, to set out into the unknown with two people whom I loved; and for John to live out his dream.


I would regret if I hadn't said yes. 


I was thrilled to meet women in the audience who were sailing and racing on their own, part of an active group of women sailors in New Orleans. When we were on our voyage, it took my breath away whenever I met a woman sailing single-handed, making her way solo around the world. I didn't have the fortitude or sailing skills for that, but I'm glad that I took the leap I did. 


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