Charlie Borland

Professional photographer for over 35 years



Course Projects

Course Projects

1)Is cruising right for you?

A-If the cruising lifestyle, or simply sailing, sounds appealing to you, you should carefully plan and this worksheet allows you to answer some questions to find out which approach is best for you.

B-Do you enjoy being in and around water and the ocean, and if so, what about the middle of the ocean?

C-Do you have a passion for travel and exploring places you have never been?

D-Do you work well around others as a team player?

E-Does being in a sort of 'man vs. nature' environment excite you?

F-Do you dream of your own boat and the freedom that could bring you?

There are several things that can be concluded based on your answers. If you do not like water and the ocean, you probably won’t want to sail. But if you do love the idea, you can be a weekend sailor and return to work during the week. You can sail and have a blast without making it a full time adventure. If you love to explore and find new places, then becoming a full time (or long term) cruiser and that new life may be best for you. Blue water sailing means crossing the ocean and occasionally there are challenges such as rough seas so question 4 is to help you decide if that sounds like a challenge or scary. Then if you own your own boat you are free to sail off into the sunset and this begs the question: is that something you want to do? Do you want to enjoy warm/hot weather all the time or a good mix? This will aid you in deciding what type of cruising you want to do and where to look for sailing opportunities.

2) Self-Assignment: Pre-planning to Sail Away

There are many tasks to complete when preparing to sail away. The following is a list of tasks for you to consider. Go ahead and answer how you plan to handle these. You may not be leaving anytime soon, but starting this mental process will help you when you are ready.

A-Determine if you plan to gain any experience before looking for a crew position. If so, where do you plan to learn the basics? (Sailing school, a one-day opportunity to learn on a day sail, etc.)

B-Do you need to visit a doctor regularly? If so, talk to your doctor about your plans and seek their advice. Will they provide you with enough prescription meds to complete your journey?

C-Do you own a home and if so, what do you plan to do with it? Does someone else live there who would take care of it allowing you to leave? Can you rent it? Do you plan to sell it? If you do plan to sell, are you seeking advice as to how best to do that then make a list of pros and cons to each approach.

D-What about your possessions? Are you able to leave them in your home? Do you plan to store them? Do you need to get rid of stuff? If you do plan to leave your home, then look at everything you own and decide how important it is to you? Make a list of anything not important and whether you should sell it or store it.

E-Establish which debts and obligations you may have and then ask yourself what can be eliminated (cable tv, health club memberships, etc) and which obligations you will still have if you leave (health insurance, student loans, credit cards, etc.) From there create a list of any obligations you will have even when sailing and then setup online banking and auto bill pay. This allows you to not worry about missing payment deadlines, etc.

F-Once you know where you will be sailing, make a checklist of things you want or need to take with you.


3) Self-Assignment: Weather and Navigation

In preparation for sailing or looking for a crew position, familiarize yourself with the online resources available to Captains regarding wind, weather, and navigation. Look at these sites and learn to how to use them:

Passage Weather:
Predict Wind:

4) Self-Assignment: Preparing for life at sea

While we have provided a good overview of life at sea in the videos, you may wish to familiarize yourself further and you can do that by:

A-Read sailing blogs. (Check the Resource section of this course for suggestions)

B-Amazon has many books on sailing and how to sail, so consider one of those for further learning.

C-Make a pre-sail checklist from online resources, that you can familiarize yourself with so when you do sign on as crew, you will be familiar with preparing to set sail.

D-Do you like to cook? If so, there are many recipes posted online and you can collect them and create a cookbook for your travels.

E- Create an online storage location (Dropbox, etc.) and upload copies of your passport and any other important docs that you may need when traveling.

5) Self-Assignment: Explore How You Can Make Money

If you need to make money while cruising, look at your skills and the options that would works best for you.

A-Do you like to write? If so, explore setting up a blog, or find your favorite blogs and inquire about writing for them. Also, create a list of sailing magazines that you could query and write for.

B-Do you like to photograph? If so, research how to create marketable stock photographs. Then setup your own ecommerce photo website, or join a stock photo agency.

C-Are you handy with building or repairing anything from sails, to engines, refrigerators, etc? If so, prepare a list of tools to bring that would allow you to offer your services in port.

D-Do you have a job you love? Explore whether this job is perfect for working online and create a plan on how you can make that work.


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