A baptism of bouncy seas
By Kat Law – Deckhand
Despite being secured to the dock in Cardiff, having completed our first journey on the eXXpedition voyage circumnavigating the UK, the guest crew has had little chance for down time as they have a full program of activities. However, I have had a small chance to reflect on the journey past. For many, I feel it would have been a formative experience as we encountered rough seas and winds gusting up to 30 knots. Life at sea would have been alien to many of the crew who had not sailed before, but I feel incredibly privileged to be on board with such strong, determined women. Sea sickness was rife on this trip, with just one guest crew member not feeling the effects of the rough weather, but despite this, the crew powered through and many opted to stay up on deck to view the horizon and take turns on the helm in order to alleviate their symptoms. The grit of these ladies was shown by their humour and support of each other through this tough spot.
In spite of the weather, we began instructing the basics of sailing where the crew learnt about the ins and outs of winches, safety equipment, and life below deck. The rough seas allowed for many of the crew to get to grips with more challenging helming, holding our bearing despite the best efforts of a confused swell trying to knock us off course!
For myself, this has been a new and exciting experience – largely used to ocean sailing I hadn’t ever fully appreciated the amount of attention to detail that is needed when planning a voyage round the tidal waters of the UK! Skipper Diane’s skills and vigilance was truly apparent when I read through the passage plans ahead of our departure. When observing Diane and Holly checking our course and progression when we were underway they have both been incredibly helpful in assisting my understanding and expanding my knowledge base as a sailor.
With only two days in port to catch our breath, and with a busy program with the eXXpedition team it will just be a flash before we are underway again. I cannot wait to see what the next adventure brings – onwards to Belfast!