Saturday, 5 July 2008


This morning if I could, I would have got off that sailing boat and gone home never to get in another dinghy as long as I lived. This was after being up between 3 and 4.30am worrying.

This afternoon I got it!

I got what sailing is about.

I sailed round the course with the instructor and my fellow student and I tacked and gybed. I looked where I was going, I stopped worrying about my feet, my hands, the ropes, the tiller and I just sailed. I almost capsized the boat and it didn't matter,cause everyone does it, it's just part of what happens.

I crewed holding onto the gib sheets (ropes) hanging off the side of the boat.

I smiled and smiled and felt wonderful. We sped across the lake, with the ever increasing wind, the spray in our faces, the sun shining.

And I could have cried with relief..... I can do it.

And I like it.

I am the world's most unsporty person. I was always the person left at the end of picking the teams at school. I could never get the hang of aerobics when all others were stretching this way and that, when going to the gym was de rigour.

And do you know I have cancer to thank for making me as fit as I am.

Since breast cancer I've got very good at pilates. It's given me my core strength. To the point that having a mastectomy makes no difference to my muscles or ability to have a full range of movement

I've learnt to walk distances and love it, after training and then doing a 10 mile charity walk last year. My body is toned, by butt is tight, my legs will walk anyone off their legs!

And now I can sail, so well that the instructor said he would be happy for me to sail alone. I'm not so sure yet, I need to practise more and build my confidence up. But I'll take his words and hold on to them. And know, that what I can do is, I can get into a racing dinghy and crew it with confidence. Cause that bit is the bit I like best.

There aren't many times I feel it's appropriate to boast about things I can do, but just for tonight I think it's okay. I've learnt to sail and I've completed my level 1 training. And I until this afternoon didn't think I could either do it, or enjoy it.

How amazing is that?


Annie Wan said...

that is fabulous :) it's so good you found your silver lining and having a super weekend. well done!

Lady in red said...

that my dear friend is just wonderful

Walker said...

That's great but I knew you can do it.
When you can turn a possitive out of a negative then you have won and you are a winner.

trousers said...

Aren't those moments great, when it all falls into place and you get a real sense of liberty and empowerment?

I got that with skiing...reaching that point where you realise, I can do it! where previously you were never sure that you might be able to.

Oh and I think it's fine to boast about these things (I have to say that though, since I've just done the same) x

Exmoorjane said...

It's great, it's fantastic and more than that, it's absolutely 150% OK to boast about fact would be Very Cross if you didn't. Go girl! You rocking sailor....YEAY!!!!!

nitebyrd said...

Bravo! Brag all you want! You've done something incredible AND you LIKE it, that's the best part.

Byrd, you ROCK!!!

BenefitScroungingScum said...

Yeay, congratulations! Sailing is such wonderful fun-although I prefer the G&T yacht version to dinghies ;)
You should be really proud of yourself, BG x

DJ Kirkby said...

Congratulations! I imagine learning to sail is much more difficult thatn you've let on.

Fire Byrd said...

Thanks gang.... you lot rock.
You are just so supportive... I'd be lost without you.
Great to see you again DJ.
bbx xxxxxxxx

Trixie said...

YAY YOU!!!!!!!

But Why? said...


Atta, girl!

Thinks: Arrrgh - another sailor to share the water with...

Mel said...


Now you can sail with a pirate hat and say 'ahhhhrrrrrrr' a lot!


<---will borrow out my pirate sword

Glitterstim said...

Woo hoo!! I'm happy for you! What an accomplishment! That must be a really fantastic feeling.

Take care!

Queen Vixen said...

Way hay - and shiver me timbers! Sticking it out so often brings great rewards. You are braver than me!

Angel said...

That is great! Conquering a fear and doing something that you didn't think you could do--what a rush of adrenaline!

You are not boasting, my dear; if you didn't tell us, how else would we know about this amazing new part of your life?

I'm so glad for you! There's another door you've just opened.

evetemple said...

More power to you, pixie. You SAIL, girl. Sorry I missed phoning you this weekend, but never mind, you'll be here soon enough. Lots to talk about now, including the exhilaration of sailing. Gin, tonic & lime have made it to the shopping list so we must be getting close......evie

FairSailor said...

What a feeling! Thank you for describing the joy of it so well - almost felt I was there with you. Seriously, way to go!

Fire Byrd said...

More thanks due for even more lovely comments.
trix x
but why x
Will definately need that pirate sword Mel!x
Blogget x
QV xx
Angel x
Eve.... can't wait!
Fairsailor, welcome lovely to meet you. We'll have to compare notes as I get hopefully get better.x

Milla said...

it's not a boasting thing, it's a conquering something thing. At least that's my excuse for when I get all unseemly and excitable skiing. There'll always be better swooshers - most of the 4 year olds for starters, the battle is with myself!

Fire Byrd said...

Milla, you are just soo right! it is all in my head. Feeling fear and doing it anyway ( as the book title says)Is the way to go.

Westerwitch/Headmistress said...

How wonderful - so pleased that you have found so much pleasure in sailing - I know other sailors and they all LOVE sailing. However I will have to take your word for it - as I get queasy in the mobile bank van if someone else gets on board.