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Dispatch: 23 January 2017
True Spirit: The Aussie Girl Who Took /Watson, Jessic/Paper/0733624979/S002-F
“When I was young I was pretty much afraid of everything. I wish I could say when it was that I went from being that quiet little girl, tagging along behind the others, to the girl who set off to sail around the world believing completely that with enough dedication she could achieve anything she set her mind to. Somewhere along the way I learnt that if you truly want to live life you have to get involved, pursue your passions and dream big. I don’t know when that was and I don’t remember jumping into the pool that day, it is just a story my mum tells. But somewhere between that moment and sailing out of Sydney Harbour on Ella’s Pink Lady, I came to understand what Helen Keller said far better than I can – ‘Life is either a daring adventure, or nothing’.”
These are Jessica’s words, taken from True Spirit. In it she details the extensive preparation she and her team made for the big voyage, her journey and the battles she fought along the way – against sleep deprivation, gale-force winds mountainous seas and the solitude most of us can only imagine. When she sailed back into Sydney Harbour on 15 May 2010, after 210 days at sea, she was cheered in by a huge crowd that included Prime Minister Kevin Rudd. To many, Jessica was our newest hero. She disagreed, saying she wasn’t a hero, “just an ordinary girl who had a dream and worked hard at it and proved that anything is possible”. This is her story.