The Family Sedan

Last winter, I attended a number of seminars for women sailors. One of the presenters made a big point of saying, “Make friends with your dinghy! It is the family sedan, and it means independence from the boat, and from your spouse as needed! It is also important for safety reasons that you be able to operate it on your own.”

For context, let’s just state for the record that I did not grow up operating lawn mowers or other devices with pull cords. The summer I was seventeen, I spent weeks living in the woods, chopping down trees with an axe because bureaucrats did not want to give girls chainsaws. If only I had spent a summer operating one of those, I’d be a dab hand at an outboard by now, and I might have been able to fund my education doing chainsaw sculpture!

Guess how many attempts it takes me. Or watch the video and find out!

It is also worth noting here that our outboard is a brand new, 2.5 hp four-stroke engine. It springs to life every time My Beloved pulls absently on the cord.

I decided that it was high time that I learned to operate this motor, so I did what I always do: I studied. I looked at videos, I read discussion boards, I talked to people about their techniques. All that was left to do was – well – to try it!

Behold the fruit of my labours. Kudos to My Beloved, who always knew I could do it!


  1. You go girl. KDT after this trip you will be come a big mussel lady.
    I am so glad you are enjoying you vacation these days. Say hi to Thom.
    See you soon.


    • Oooh Kathleen! At the end I was also pulling, trying to help you. You are very persistent..(as I always knew) Your arms are going to become very strong! Good for you. Practice makes perfect! I love the video…Have fun tootling around..,A great video for posterity.


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