| S/V Troubadour had a very enjoyable trip. The only disappointment was that in spite of all our preparations and purchases of fancy lures, and unending efforts we never caught a fish. Everything went fairly well up until after we crossed the finish line at about 3:30 AM. On that last night, the winds were light, and all was quite peaceful and we were anticipating a quick and easy landing. while we were calmly waiting for daylight to sail into the cut, weather conditions deteriorated rapidly. It seems mother nature wanted to show us at the last minute what she could have dealt us during the actual cruise. The winds increased to 27knots, the seas became rough, which lead to some boat damage including an engine that would no longer start. The situation became quite stressful, as the weather was forecasted to worsen and we could not attempt to enter the cut in those conditions with no engine. We spent a few hours analyzing the engine, while trying to figure out a backup plan. Luckily, Matt had previously videoed a technician doing maintenance on Troubadour’s engine, and with the help of that video Matt was able to quickly resolve the problem. We were soon on our way through the cut and docked in Green Turtle Cay. We were all tremendously relieved and happy to have made it in safely.
What a difference a few hours can make in a journey to anyone, especially a child. The bright young 11 year old, Graham Gillman, the only child to participate in the rally, survived the ordeal just fine. I was impressed with his ability to handle it all. Typical of a child’s fist ocean cruise, he did not like the stormy situation at all and stated that he never ever wanted to go sailing again, never wanted to get on a boat again, etc. But 30 minutes later, as we entered the cut and the seas calmed, Graham climbed into the cockpit. He could not contain his excitement at seeing for the first time the beauty of the water & the islands. Graham stated over & over so excitedly “I take back what I said, I take back what I said. I love this place. The water is so pretty. I want to stay here forever.” He was so cute. I pulled out my camera for the first time on this trip and tried to capture his expression.
Background: Matt Gillman, his wife Amy Beal, and son Graham Gillman are setting out on their life dream. They sold their house & cars 2 months ago and will cruise for a few years. They are homeshooling Graham.
written by: Angie Baylis, professional crew/ advisor on the trip.