Sail Training


Good Morning Everyone. Unsettled weather here in the Northeast for the next few days. The sap flow has slowed down here the last few days, a curious thing since it has been so warm.

The crew has survived their first few days of fit-out. They seem willing to tackle anything despite the bumps and bruises and nervousness, mine and theirs. I read about sail training programs and the skills they will teach you but as one crew member and I talked about at the end of yesterday, this whole crew thing is as much about mutual respect as it is hard skills. While I appreciate a competent sailor I also appreciate the human element that makes the difference between good and great. So in this picture is a great sailor in the making. Jennie is willing to tackle head first whatever it is that needs doing, including slushing the mast with grease, as you can see here. I told her she would get a raise. She assumed I was talking about money. But money can’t pay anyone for what it takes to be a great crew member. I value most that rare quality, a discipline of sorts, that allows a crew member to consider the needs of their fellow crew members and the schooner before their own. If you ever want to try being a crew member our Wooden Boat Course may be just the ticket.

Most of the emphasis of mainstream media advertising seems to me to focus our attention on how we can be more comfortable and independent people. The fanciest rain gear in the world doesn’t come with the mental toughness that a deckhand needs to stand all day in the fog and rain straining to identify potential perils. Aboard a schooner there are numerous physical and emotional challenges that take the crew way out of a normal range of comfort and that can be most successfully negotiated as a team. And maybe that is what makes windjammer passengers so unique. Windjammers guests seem to be willing to sacrifice the national no tell motel chain for a little closer experience with the elements and with the camaraderie of others. I find these experiences make me feel most alive and the guests who come aboard are certainly a lively group. What a gift for our family to meet all of you. Thank you!

Have a great day. Be well. Do good.

Photo be Jim Dugan…crew member and web guru. Does you mother know where your camera has been?

One comment

  1. If I’m not mistaken Jennie slushed the mainmast during my first trip on the Mary Day in August 2005. My memory is that Jennie is related to the Mary Day’s first Captain Havilah Hawkins. So if my memory isn’t too faulty she comes by her sailing instincts honestly.

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