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post #20 of Old 10-04-2007
Galley Goddess
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Oregon
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Well, a spot just for us ladies? How nice...there does seem to be a bit of 'potty mouth' on some of the guy threads.

Sooooo ladies. What do you want to do with this spot?

I'd be interested in hearing from other women who've single handed their boat, even if it's just a short trip, particularly your first trip. What went well and what could you have done better and was there anything 'annoying'?

This spring I took our Newport 30 down the Columbia river to have her hauled out and the bottom painted and new zinc put on. The trip down was nice, good weather but I was a bit tense as I'd not traveled down this channel before. Plus I wasn't exactly sure what the boat yard would look like from the water. The trip down was easy and went well.

It was bringing her back to the club that turned out to be annoying.

I had my daughter on board with me as well as Buddy our chihuahua. The weather wasn't the best and I grabbed my foul weather gear, as I could see a dark weather line coming in. My daughter stayed below with a nice little fire going in the solid fuel heater...which sent a sliver of smoke in my direction.

I motored up the channel, yes I used the iron jenny as there was no wind. As I passed the first set of docked boats a 'nice man' began telling me how he wished he could go sailing. As a matter of fact he talked to me until he ran out of dock.

A little farther upriver I become aware of the fact that many of the guys working on the docks were look at my boat. Some of them are actually running and jumping over stuff to get a better look. Now, if I was a young, svelte, chick-y-babe I'd have thought they were looking at me! But being the old bat that I am, I figured I was having problems.

So I check the dark cloud line which by now was quite close and then lean over the stern to be sure I've water pumping out the back. Sure enough I can see the water pump is working fine. Now I'm frowning...maybe I'm going too fast, check my wake, almost none. Maybe I'm on the wrong side of the markers, nope.

Drats! The rain starts pouring and I pull the hood from my foulies over my head. I see a small commercial fishing boat just ahead of me and I slow down until I can figure out which way to pass them as this is a really narrow channel. As I moved past the entire crew comes running to say hi and look at the I'm really feeling weird!

Finally I'm out on the Columbia and the rain pours down and the fog screeched in. Visibility dropped to almost nothing! On came my running lights...we have commercial barges and I wanted them to be able to see me even if I was staying outside of the channel.

GPS in hand, eyes straining to see and smoke making them water...I slowly make my way back to our slip in the club. Later while talking with a much more seasoned lady sailor in our was pointed out that the guys weren't looking at the boat. It's just soooooo odd to see a woman by herself on a boat.

How offensive! Ladies we as a group, have to do better. It's something I harp on periodically in my blog. Women are perfectly capable....we just have to push beyond our comfort zone.

So, how about it? Anyone else?
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