Sunday, March 24, 2013

Spring WHAT?

**EDIT**  Read my next post too, to find out what's up

I'm sitting in my dining room, in Ottawa, Kansas. Spring supposedly sprung a few days ago, we're talking daffodils, robins and Easter Bunnies.  Right?


Reality is another 7" of snow and 28* F.  I'm bundled up like a reindeer herder, pining for warmer climes and sandy beaches.  When one lives in a 100+ year old house, with no central heating, one tends to live in layers in the wintertime.  Need to warm up?  DO DISHES.  BAKE BREAD.


Since I last wrote, I've become aware of, and interested in ANOTHER round the world yacht race.  Who knew there were so many?

The Clipper Round the World Race starts this August from Gosport, in the UK.  Same basic premise as the Volvo, go around as fast as you can, while making stops along the way.  The big difference here is that all the crew members are amateurs.  That's right- teachers and secretaries and ministers and firemen and students.  All sailing around the world.

I have a friend who's doing a leg, maybe two, in the upcoming race.  She's shelling out the money, doing the training and taking off on a dream adventure.

Am I interested?  Maybe.  ;)  The thought of sailing out of sight of land is terrifying, but the thought of staying ON land is also scary.  So I figured I'd ease into things by applying to be the Race Office Assistant.

Remember all I did for ASSA ABLOY? (insert Wayne's World flashback graphics)

During the 2001-2002 VOR, I was working for an ASSA ABLOY Group company, and was named "The Assistant to the North American Champion" for ASSA ABLOY corporate. In the months leading up to the North American stopovers, I figured out a way to convince die-hard NASCAR and NFL fans, living in Nevada, to be interested in a yacht race that didn't even come within 2,000 miles of us. I also spent that time being a cheerleader, and following the race around the world from my desk while arranging housing, events and other activities in two ports for over 300 people worldwide. 

When I got to the stopover in Miami, I spent weeks running around like a crazy person doing whatever needed to be done. When people asked me what I actually did with the Race, I would say “I make the boat go faster.” I didn’t sail, of course, but I did the things that allowed other people to do what they do best. I tracked down a playpen for the chef’s daughter, leaving the chef available to cook the food that fueled the sailors. I arranged speaking engagements for the team members, allowing their trainers and handlers to develop programs to keep everyone strong and healthy. I picked up supplies for the shore team, allowing them time to concentrate on boat and sail repairs. I even mailed a package to Richard Mason's dad, so that Richard didn't have to take the time to track down packaging and a post office. Because I was there, doing what I’m good at, other people could do what they’re good at, and the boat went faster.

I figure I can do that again for the Clipper Race.  Go around the world, prepping the stopovers, making the boats go faster, living the dream.

From where I sit on this cold, grey, snowy day, that's a pretty good picture.  And I look PERFECT in it.  

1 comment:

  1. Best of luck with your quest Aileen and hope you make your dreams become a reality!