This week,  we caught up with our first mate, Maggie Kerr, for a mini-interview. From how she started sailing to her favourite onboard recipes, keep reading to find our more about what it’s like to be a profession crewmember on eXXpedition’s Round the World voyage.

 

When did you start sailing? How old were you, what peaked your interest in it?

I grew up in the Whitsunday islands which is sailing paradise in a family adventure sailing business with three big sailing boats. I also started sailing sabots (small dinghies) when I was 5 years old with my siblings. We trained and raced every weekend with the local squad and travelled over Australia for national titles each year. Sailing has always been a huge part of my life, racing always peaked my interest when I was young until I did my first ocean crossing – then I was really hooked.

What is the biggest difference in the vibe onboard an all-female voyage?

The consumption of biscuits and the laughs. There is not a day that goes by at sea with all where I don’t end up crouched over gasping for air amongst laughter.

Photo Credit: Sophie Dingwall & eXXpedition

How many nautical sailing miles do you each have under your belt before this voyage?

I’ve logged around 25,000nm while working.

What is the first thing you teach someone when they come onboard?

How to flush the toilet!

How do you help first-timers build their confidence throughout their voyage? What is the most fun part about that journey?

By teaching the basics and slowly introducing the sailing language. Then slowly building on those basics. Watching the crew attempt to mimic me steering with my feet.

Photo Credit: Sophie Dingwall & eXXpedition

What technological and non-technological tools do you rely on to navigate across the seas?

Navionics and the compass are the main tools for navigation when underway. Meticulous planning goes into routing our passages before we depart using paper charts and cruising guides. Anna has also been teaching me to navigate via the sun and stars.

Most sacred sailing superstitions?

Do not leave port with bananas onboard.

What are ideal sailing conditions?

20-25knots from behind with some good surfing waves while reeling in a big tuna.

What are you favourite night watch games or conversation topics?

Who am I and bad first dates.

Favourite recipe for onboard meals?

Mushroom risotto.

Photo Credit: Sophie Dingwall & eXXpedition

Any advice for people living in confined spaces and in lockdown around the world based on your experiences out at sea? (ie food provisioning, exercising in small spaces, routines, etc)

Keep social – we play Trivia with the other boats in the marina via VHF radio.
Keep busy – do all those little jobs you have been wanting to do but haven’t had time.
Use your home to create workouts – we climb the mast for exercise

What is your favourite job onboard?

Climbing the mast!

What is your least favourite job onboard?

Unclogging the shower drain of hair which entails me being upside down with my head in the bilge pulling out all the crews lovely hair.

What has been a highlight from the RTW voyages?

There has been so many.
Story time with Sophie Dingwall (phase 1 deckhand), the hilarious crew challenges in the halfway parties in the middle of the ocean and the wildlife. We had 6 boobie birds that caught a ride on the bow overnight coming into the Galapagos, where we then went and swam with sharks. A young minke whale played around the boat for hours in the Atlantic Ocean and a dolphin flipped about 12 times in one jump out of the water as we arrived in Tahiti.

What is a destination you have not been to yet that you would like to sail to?

Alaska via the northwest passage.