My gut reaction to being assigned to write about sailing was, well, I was intimidated. I love the water, so much so that as a kid I wished I could live submerged, but I'd only actually been sailing once. I was going to need to do a lot of research and talk to people with sailing experience to get this right.
As a water lover, I was immediately engaged when I read that most sailors today sail because they love being on the water. No, I was hooked. I started to envision a life at sea, sailing from place to place around the world -- which, as it turns out, is called cruising. While cruising is a lifestyle, not a hobby, there are plenty of sailing hobbyists who set out in dinghies instead of keelboats or yachts.
While I wouldn't recommend anyone set sail without extensive training and on-board experience, I hope to have covered all the basics of the sport -- and to teach those like me the difference between starboard, port, stern and bow.
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