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Ted Lavino
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Username: tlavino

Post Number: 138
Registered: 01-2006
Posted on Saturday, June 12, 2010 - 12:30 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

There has been much ado regarding a few recent circumnavigation attempts by younger sailors. I for one heartily applaud both the efforts of the skippers as well well as their parents and friends for providing support in such an endeavor. A couple comments from the LA Times Facebook page regarding Abby's recent rescue in the Indian Ocean puts it better than I can:

Expect more from young people and you'll be flat amazed at what they can do. Unless you LIKE a uniformly safe, bland world where no one ever challenges their limits? Her age is the ONLY issue I'm hearing, not whether she was competent, and had the proper training and gear. Any halfway aware adult knows that there are 40 year-olds who can't be trusted to go to the corner store alone. On the other hand, I was a ten-year old who could be trusted to run a commercial fishing boat competently, taking my turn on watch, alert for things going wrong in the middle of the night. I was trained, and knew what to do, when the bilge pump quit, or the tide was taking us the wrong direction, or the weather took a turn for the worse. Sure I made mistakes, and SO DID MY DAD! I'm a 20-year Coast Guard veteran, with quite a few hours looking for lost souls behind me, so I'm not just talking out of school here. Anyone who sails long enough, will get flattened by a storm. It's only a matter of time. Last I heard she got knocked down three times before her mast snapped the fourth time. She had the presence of mind to set off the manual EPIRB, not the automatic one, which told everyone three things: where she was, she was alive, and aware that she was out of options. That's not incompetence, that's grit and determination. So her rescue is gonna cost some. Her parents are backing her, and her sponsors, and they're all aware of the risks. I hope she picks up the pieces and goes on.

If you look at her accomplishment, you could hardly say she didn't know what she was doing. She was very prepared and when unknown variables prevented her from reaching her goal, she was able to send a distress call. She learned SO MUCH in this ACCOMPLISHMENT. In starting a business, people everywhere (who are afraid to start ventures themselves) will tell you "no don't do it and all the reasons why". There are naysayers everywhere. There are unknown variables that can keep you from reaching your goals though the journey brings more than you can imagine. Even if something goes array, you gain skills and knowledge that you NEVER would have learned without venturing out. Skills you apply to worthy causes. I'm a supporter of all pioneers who go prepared and boldly into the world.

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