Sailing Endless Summer

The past two weekends Justin and I took a sailing class with Penny Whiting on board a 50 foot yacht called Endless Summer.  The course was 15 hours total and we learned the basics of sailing and navigation.  There were 11 students in the class and each day we all had a new "job" from rigging the main sail, rigging the jib, to being a sewer rat.  We also took turns steering, adjusting the main sail, and adjusting the jib as we learned to tack and set the sails for the direction of our course.  We sailed out in the harbour and basically turned in circles as we learned.  I'm not sure Justin and I will be setting out on our own right away but hopefully we learned enough to eventually sail on our own!  

Our instructor, Penny Whiting, is quite the character and has lived a very interesting life.  She met the queen when she became a Member of the British Empire, was a professional surfer, her son was in the Olympics for sailing, and now she serves as a captain on many yachts basically sailing around the world.  She was very strict with all of us and we joked that we paid to get yelled at.  It was considered high praise if Penny told you, you had done something well.  On the last day, she told me, "I like the way you let that sheet go".  Success.

I will leave you with a few "Pennyisms"....

If it's hard, you are doing it wrong.
No, it's nothing like that.
Bad luck, insert name, bad luck.
No boat in the world can sail into the wind.

About to leave the marina

Endless Summer leaving the viaduct via the draw bridge

Sneaking in a picture before Penny caught me
Geared up in my wet weather gear before a nasty sail in 30 knot winds

Justin rigging the jib on Endless Summer

Sailing around in circles in the harbour

Justin taking his turn at the wheel

Justin letting go the jib sheet and getting a little wet


CrazyUncle said...

Oh, you poor suckers. I learned everything I know from Penny Whiting, too, and for free. Check this out ( There is no way I would guess that she is 62.

That sounds like y'all had a challenging set of lessons. I'm glad you both did this. And thanks for sharing some sneaky photos.

Jenny @ Practically Perfect... said...

How fun! I must confess that I'm a tad jealous of you two learning how to sail :-) I'm glad that you were able to do it and that you had a good time!

Priscilla said...

What a great idea to learn to sail, good on you guys :) i've lived in the City of Sails the majority of my life and the thought has never really crossed my mind.