Posted by: rosyroadsadventures | January 13, 2012

Following Laura Dekker

N 18° 03.77′   W 63° 05.31′

Simpson Bay Lagoon, Marigot, St. Martin

Our friend Glen reminded me about 16-year-old Laura Dekker’s imminent arrival in Sint Maarten. I had remembered reading about the Dutch sailor’s dream to sail solo around the world when she was 13 and the controversy that resulted.

Laura and her family resolved the legal dilemmas that blocked her voyage for several years. Although she departed from Gibraltar in August of 2010 on her 38 foot ketch Guppy, Sint Maarten is considered the starting point and finish line for her solo circumnavigation. She left Sint Maarten in January of 2011 and is now completing the last leg of her journey, crossing the Atlantic from South Africa.

I had the chance to catch up on her weblog over the past few days to read the thoughts and experiences she shares. What an amazing and inspiring young woman!

It has been interesting to compare notes. Our pace has been so much slower by comparison, with far fewer sea days. In just two months longer than we have been island-hopping our way to the Caribbean, Laura has gone around the world. We have actually visited more destinations. The price for record-setting is limited stops.  There are even some who strive to circumnavigate non-stop, foregoing the opportunity to see new places. Definitely not our travel mode, but to each their own.

As one still adapting to this cruising life I admit there are days aboard when I feel inadequate, and sometimes overwhelmed. It is very humbling to see that one so young has been easily able to manage greater challenges single-handedly. What a thrill it would be to visit far away places around the world in a small vessel. For me, the long ocean crossings just aren’t going to happen any time soon, and definitely not on the Mar Azul, a vessel better suited to a shorter cruising range.  Tackling a two or three-day passage would be the next step, and overcoming sea-sickness/sea-lethargy a big hurdle.

We hope to be among those cheering Laura on when she arrives at the Sint Maarten Yacht Club later this month.

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Responses

  1. What a great accomplishment for such a young sailor! Glad you will be there to greet her! I’m sure she will receive quite a welcoming party! It will probably attract internantional news agencies from around the world! Please share pictures, if you can!


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