Woman aboard

Den 2. february 2016
Af Resen Sails

Cut me some slacks
"It´s not called a wall, but a bulkhead, and no it´s not called a kitchen, but a galley." "If you call that a string one more time, you´ll be sent off the boat."
I have to say, that it´s lovely to be on board a boat, but I didn´t realize that there were so many things I didn´t know anything about when you are a part of the sailing life.
I had never sailed before. The first time I was on a sail trip is when I went on a sail vacation on a borrowed boat. Of course I have been on a ferry and I have also sailed in a post boat in Greenland and a fishing boat in Australia, but well, it´s not the same at all as when you are going to put the boat to and from the quay, cook food in the galley and learn how to roll the ropes together.
Subsequently we bought our own boat, and I have spent the last four summers practicing how to live on a boat.

Sailing language
Its not a lie when I say that I have been corrected over 50 times on my sailing vocabulary while in the boat. Words like right and left, which colors the buoys have and their direction compared to their position in relation to land, and of course the names of different things in the boat. It has been a challenge.
Even though I have been a part of the sailing life in the last four years, there´s still a lot I don't know and I still have a lot to learn.
If you are going on board on a boat for the first time, you can practice on some of the terms here: http://www.boatsafe.com/nauticalknowhow/gloss.htm

Dinner on board
When you are new on a boat, the room seems a little narrow in the galley (kitchen). So far I have to admit that I haven´t served the most exquisite meals throughout the summers.
Bread and cold cuts are always easy, but it´s even easier to explore the city you arrive at and experience the culinary kitchen where my skills won´t have to be put to the test.
The most "wild" food I have made is stew with a little help to light the burner from the captain. One thing I had to get used to is that the pot doesn´t fall when the boat heels. It is of course thought through, so that you can cook when you are sailing in rough weather.
Speaking of food on a boat, it instantly makes me think about the next subject, which is about how you feel when you´re sailing. On my own behalf I can just say that going down in the cabin and preparing the food while we´re sailing isn´t a good mix up. Usually I hurry down and "throw" everything we need in the cockpit since afterwards everything goes back and forth on the bench. I concentrate on looking out in the open while giving my husband and my kid some food. It works really well if the preparations are done before we go sailing.

I actually didn´t see seasickness as a problem when we got our own boat, even though I had been seasick before. I kind of felt protected when we had to sail on our own, but of course that wasn´t so.
Well, seasickness and I have simply become quite good friends (it made the first step into the friendship) especially if I don´t have breakfast before we go and a good nights sleep which is the alpha and omega of how my trip is going to be.
My seasickness begins with an incredible tiredness and I can´t keep my eyes open. My husband can see fast that I´m about to go pounding, so he sends me to the cabin to get some sleep. Sleep is simply the best cure to my seasickness, but it´s less cozy for my husband and child when I sleep the entire trip.
As a prevention to my seasickness, I make sure that I don't drink too much. I eat biscuits to keep myself constantly satiated without getting full and at times, I steer the boat.
Seasickness is really annoying and when I´m in the middle of it, I think: "What the f*** am I doing here" and "never again". But the few times I experience it, it is quickly offset by the calm sea, the porpoises swimming around the boat, sunbathing on the deck, looking out over the water and enjoying the serenity or the wind in my hair and when my son and I talk about what all the clouds imagine or when to catch fish. So life on the water is just awesome!

Wind and weather
There´s not much to say about that subject other that it´s really important to dress appropriately.
It quickly becomes slightly cool out on the water on a warm summers day.
Moreover, during windy weather, it is impractical to have long hair and I would definitely recommend a good band, a lot of range, or a little tight cap that can fix the locks.

In the beginning there is a lot of unfamiliar sounds in the boat. The ropes can stand and creak, the haul in other boats can be very noisy, or there can be a long deafening silence - mostly the last. In the winter we live in Copenhagen with constant noise and so it's great with the silence.
My husband has had nights when he has woken up in panic thinking that the boat was drifting away from land, and quickly reaches the top of the cockpit before he realizes that everything is okay. Such a story is always fun talking or remembering it afterwards.

It's very different to stay on a boat compared to being at home with high ceilings. As I have spent more time on a boat, things on the boat get their fixed positions and there are standard routines when taking the boat to and from the quay. Life becomes totally simple after a few routines alongside beautiful evenings in the cockpit. The bruises gets fewer and fewer as time goes by!
I simply love when spring comes and we begin to prepare the boat for sailing. I am usually excited about it, and it has become my thing to polish and bottom paint our boat. There are usually many jealous men at the port, whose wives do not even bother to go sailing.

I think you women should come along as I serve you a glass of wine.

See you out there:-D