Single handed sailor girl

cruising, solo sailor girl, bristol 24

I’m starting to wonder if my karma is fucked. I’ve had only two days of settled weather since I launched my boat 10 days ago. Everyday I’m running from an ever changing wind direction, trying to find protection for the night. I’ve had a mutiny onboard already and my crew member left the boat today with her dog. I met a sailor boy who lives far away with a boat of his own. My heart aches a little just to think about the short time I spent with both of these humans.

My dinghy most certainly has a hole, and I’m draining my cruising kitty by passing three days of near gale north westerlies at a marina because I couldn’t find an anchorage in time for the approaching system.

Bristol 24, live aboard, solo sailor girl

But it’s not all bad. I spent the better part of the day kicking around the shop in the boatyard, picking the brain of the salty and knowledgable repair man, touching all the tools and admiring his gelcoat refinishing jobs. He helped me to replace the stuffing in the packing gland of my rudder, which was causing quite a bit of water to get into the boat. He gave me the names of all his friends at boatyards down this side of the lake, and encouraged me to use his name to try and find work.

I have the heater that I stole from my friend at the marina where I launched my boat, so I’m toasty and warm tied to the dock with an excuse to track him down on his boat next weekend to return the heater and rendevous.

My boat is finally my space again. My guests are all gone. I no longer have to worry about how long they are staying, if they are coming back, if they are enjoying my lifestyle. I’m free now, I suppose.

solo sailor girl, bristol 24, live aboard

A few days before launch I wrote in my journal about freedom.

“I have no job, no bills, no partner, no one to answer to or take care of. I’m fucking free, but I suppose there’s a loneliness in that freedom.” 

Two days later and therein I was consumed with new relationships, mending relationships, crumbling ones. All on top of a boat that never stops moving, weather that never stops pounding, fears that never seem to waver.

Despite all the drama with my ever changing and motley crew, I’m moved by what’s happened this past month and half. The onslaught of help, kindness, and encouragement. As soon as this storm passes it’s time to face the world alone in my little boat, just as I always intended to do.


  1. You’re starting to discover why most sailors in this day and age don’t live on the hook. Everyone has to find their happy medium between land and sea.

    For me, I love staying at a city marina that allows me to stay on the boat 15 days a month. Paying monthly moorage fees keeps moorage costs at a minimum, and the 15 day rule gives me the excuse I need to leave to dock or visit friends out of town. Since I’m not technically a ‘liveaboard’, I don’t have to jump through the hoops or pay the exorbitant fees.

    You’ve got lots of time to decide, but give some thought to the logistics of your liveaboard lifestyle once you reach your destination.

  2. You’re not totally alone my pet, your Auntie Cynthia is with you in spirit. Love being kept in the loop! xoxoxo

  3. I have found out that there ain’t no surer way to find out whether you like people or hate them than to travel with them.
    Mark Twain, Tom Sawyer Abroad (Tom Sawyer & Huckleberry Finn, #3)

    Disclaimer, I’m certainly not implying that you hate anyone, and traveling would imply maybe a share house on Fire Island or something, not a shakedown cruise on a small craft with bad weather. But there’s a lesson to be learned here, damned if I know what it is, but, I just have this feeling…