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post #3 of Old 10-22-2004
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Dear jkelley,
let me repeat your key statements that should guide you through the right decisions:
1) This will be your first sailing trip together with your wife
2) Neither of you are sailors
3) You are looking for an experienced crew to sail together
4) You want to sail around Mallorca island in Spain

Conclusion: you want to “try” and see what sailboat cruising looks like.
Well then, unless you want to scare off your wife and get a cheap divorce or/and end up with a bad experience that cost you a fortune, I suggest to plan carefully and consider the following:
a) Med is not a paradise all year round. Plan your trip during summer (that can mean early summer – June to early July - as well as late summer late September - to avoid the peak season).
b) What about joining a flotilla?
c) Ideal sailing ground for starters is the Ionian. Croatia, Greece and Turkey have much weaker and settled winds than the Balearics or the french South (Corsica included). Go east.
d) Finally, the cheapest and by far the safest way might be to arrange with an experienced skipper who owns the boat (i.e. that means he keeps her in perfect condition) to sail you around some islands. A certain Sailmaster claims these services right in this messageboard and be sure he will soon pop up with an interesting offer.

My last advice: play it safe and prefer professionals when dealing with the sea, which never forgives naive amateurism …
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