For one week we had three of our grandchildren staying with us and taking basic sailing lessons down in the bay. Each morning I would drive them to the yacht club and pick the up again in the afternoon. The first day they learned what the boom was, as for all of them it hit them regularly. BOOM! The second day too, BOOM!
Concerned that they might get put off, one morning I set up the table fan, made a simple little boat with a sail and demonstrated that there were certain times when that pesky boom could get them. DUCK!
On the morning drive I would give them quizzes on boat parts to keep them entertained and if the truth be known, give them an edge in class. I really wanted them to shine and finish their week self- satisfied and confident.
Near the end, parents and such were invited to the dock to watch the students sail around the harbour in their little dinghies.
It was a pleasure to see their concentrating looks in the afternoon sea breeze. Back and forth, round the buoys, with me recording the event with a telephoto lens.
Time to pack up, put the masts, sails and booms, the rudders and centreboards away. And of all the things we saw that afternoon that made us proud it was the way our kids pitched in, helped others and did final checks. And here I had thought it was succeeding at sailing that was important.