Sunday, September 19, 2010

Adventure #80 - The Sand Yacht

My dad lives in Brittany, West of France, very close to the sea. I went there for a week in August and we decided to all try sand yachting one afternoon. Something I had never done before and never thought about doing since anything that can be described as physical and fast don't usually attracts me. But since The New Project is teaching me to change my habits, I was in for the adventure!

What is sand yachting?

The purpose of sand yachting is to move on a beach using the power of the wind.
The "vehicle" is composed of a sit with wheels and a sail. You control the wheels with your feet and the sail with a rope.

I easily get scared with things running fast. Even more when I am in control. I hate driving. I'm always extremely afraid that I will crash the car. Sand yachting is not as fast as a car, well it can still go up to 50km/h (about 30miles/h I think) but still fast, even more when you are sitting very close to the ground.

The weather was not great that day. Very grey, rainy and windy - windy was actually of course quite necessary! But it was probably better to have a day like this than a very hot one.

We were first explained how to drive the thing, how to use the wind and the sail to go faster, slower or stop, how to turn and we were left on the beach, turning into circles for an hour. I did enjoy it but the fact that there were so many people (I think we were about 12-15 on the same course) was not helping me to relax. Going fast mainly scares me because of other people. I wish I had had the possibilty to learn how to use the sand yacht on my own before being surrounded by people. I kind of start panicking if I'm driving a vehicle and I see somebody arriving very fast next to me (and I actually hit another yacht driven by a kid. Twice. I was not proud.)

Anyway, I think it was a good experience as it forced me to go against one of my stupid fears. And also tell my family that it really annoys me when they see me as the girl who only reads books and despises anything physical or adventurous. Just give me a break.

When Angela and I started this adventure, I said I'd really like to learn sailing. I then thought it could be possible during the summer, but things turned out to be different than what I expected and I didn't have the opportunity to sail. Now that autumn's coming back, that I'm London and quite poor, I don't think the sailing will happen (well you never know!), but at least the sand yachting gave me a little taste of it.

I wonder if I would also be scared if I was in charge of sailing a boat...

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