Re: First time on the water today, I could use some advice!
no "years of experience" here but, I totally understand what you are saying about a small motor. many here will tell you it can actually be a hindrance etc, however if you want your wife to sail with you, you have to concede to her wishes to some extent.
I took my wife out on a small boat without an engine on it. (rental) we had no trouble sailing, or bringing it back in but she was never "at ease" because of fear of being stranded.
I purchased a first boat recently and ensured it had an engine with it. Suddenly she can't wait to go out on the boat, because she knows the engine is there if we need it.
I want her to go sailing with me so I give in to her concerns, a minor concession in my mind.
BTW I did take the ASA 101 class and was very glad I did. It is pricey (and I'm not one to spend $ on lessons for anything) but very well worth it. It shortens the learning curve dramatically.