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The joy of sailing

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There is a great deal of water on earth and in one’s body. We can live on water alone. It suffices us more than food does. But it can be enjoyed in more ways than drinking.

Sailing is almost a non-word in the Philippines. It is a hobby of the rich and the sport of the famous – because they are the only ones who can afford to buy boats. But it seems to be a very popular way to spend one’s holiday here in the Netherlands.

In only my first month here, I have been at two sailing trips – the first was hosted by my boyfriend’s best friend and the second, by his parents. The first one only lasted for a day in a motorboat. But the second time, we went for a weekend in a sailboat and I enjoyed the trip immensely.

The first time I set my eyes on Thule (that’s the name of the boat), I liked her immediately. I thought that she was the most beautiful boat in the harbour of Vlaardingen at the time.

I don’t really know much about boats but this much I know. Thule is a Hallberg-Rassy 31. She is big enough to accommodate six people and is very comfortable. Her light blue interiors are very elegant and she glides smoothly on the water. Now, that sounds like a commercial, huh?!

I found sailing with Thule – my first ever sailing trip with a sailboat – very interesting and entertaining. I guess, it was also because the weather was great. We experienced the sun but it was not too hot. It was also a little cold but not freezing.

It was magnificent how she moved so gracefully above the water however strong the wind was – or maybe, the credit should go to whoever sails the ship. And the nature that one sees when one sails is also amazing. We saw birds propped up above the trees – maybe drying their wings – and fish and more greens.

I also had a preview of the different sizes and makes and colours of boats in the harbour while sailing on the waters of Zuid-Holland. Many old boats sailed that day so we had a nice time boat-seeing. There were really big ones and many small ones. There was a boat that looked like the Black Pearl and there was also one which looked like an old Chinese sailing ship. We even saw one that was made in the 1920s and was an old fishing boat!

It was also nice to meet people, get to know them and see them help each other – especially in anchoring a boat. In sailing, it does not matter where you go or where your destination is, what matters is that you enjoy the waters – may it be calm or otherwise. I do not swim so I may have experienced only half of the real joy of sailing. But I liked the tranquillity that it gives and the adventure that lies ahead. So it would be nice to sail more, because in this hobby, you are not pressured to fulfill anything or complete a mission. It is the journey, not the destination. #

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