While in Oriental, NC, we met Emily who was solo cruising on an Ariel 26. Now, Emily was different from other cruisers we have met so far for a few reasons:
1. She is a solo female cruiser.
2. She does her own repair work.
The first point really stood out to Maddie and me. There seems to be a typical group of people who are cruising, and they fall neatly into a few categories. You have the retired couple who worked their whole life with the dream of cruising and is now doing it in retirement, and then you have the younger crowd that seems to be dominated by men.
The younger crowd seems to made up of guys in their early 20s who want to go explore the world and find themselves! They gather up what they can and set out on a boat around 30 feet in length or less and head off cruising. They will work their way along as they travel and see the world from a perspective that most only dream of!
Some of these young men are accompanied by a wife or girl friend, but if they are alone, they are all male. Emily breaks this stereotype by being a solo female cruiser. I am not saying that women can't or shouldn't, (in fact I think everyone should!) but just that you rarely encounter this situation.
To make it even more unique, Emily does her own repair work. She knows the setup of her boat and everything that makes it tick! If something starts to fail, she knows what the problem is and how to fix it; then when she makes her next port, she fixes it herself!
Emily maintains a blog as well and I highly encourage you to check it out!
She is currently heading south towards warmer waters (we all are this time of year) where she will continue to replace her aged standing rigging as she works along the way.
Cruising is an amazing vantage point on the world, and it shouldn't be limited to just crazy young guys and elderly retired couples. Everyone who dreams of sailing off into the distance to see what's out there should certainly give it a go! If you have trouble along the way, there will always be other friendly cruisers around who will be there to lend a hand.
Fair winds Emily!