Dinghy sailing is her passion

2015-11-24 06:00
Estelle Buys and rear commodore for dinghies, Myles White doff their caps at Point Yacht Club’s opening cruise in the harbour. Photos: supplied

Estelle Buys and rear commodore for dinghies, Myles White doff their caps at Point Yacht Club’s opening cruise in the harbour. Photos: supplied

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SAILOR and Pinetown resident Estelle Buys (44) describes herself as a person who has a witty, wonderful sense of humour.

Buys is one of only a handful of experienced female sailors in Durban and recently returned to the water after taking a year’s sabbatical when she studied nature conservation.

Her first appearance this year was at the opening cruise hosted by Point Yacht Club.

“I was born on the pavement. I grew up in Oshakati, but finished high school in Kroonstad Afrikaans High School. My favourite subjects were biology and Afrikaans. I studied B.Sc physiotherapy at the University of the Free State and grew up with three siblings.

I am now a qualified physiotherapist specialising in the treatment and rehabilitation of people with disabilities.

“I got into sailing in 2006 when I was treating a sailing instructor at a sailing school and we had to figure out what he needed to do to get back onto yachts. Afterwards he asked if I wanted to sail on dinghies, my answer was, ‘Why not’. A few years later I was having a beer on the lawn at the yacht club with the guys and I was asked if I wanted to buy a boat and my answer was, ‘Why not!’ and the rest, as they say, is history.”

When asked what she enjoys most about sailing she said: “Every moment out there. Even on a bad day it beats a good day indoors. The best moment on the water was when I was sailing with Rick on my old classic lady Fe-Fi-Fo-Fum who is roughly 30 years old and we beat the hotshots, Patrick Harris and Jeremy Kriek on their new Foxxof.”

Buys said she has an interesting character and her goal is to put a smile on people's faces.

“I am a very interesting person who is driven by her own passion. I have a weakness for nice tight bums and red wine however, my goal is to put a smile on people’s faces.

Besides sailing she enjoys cycling along the beach front, reading and is addicted to killer Soduku.

“Recently cycled the 35km Amashova and it was relatively easy, mostly downhill. I enjoyed it. I believe this is my second big cycling event.”

She has been sailing with Myles White - the rear commodore of dinghies at Point Yacht Club - since 2012. She used to own her own classic Flying Fifteen – which is a class of dinghy.

“A dinghy is a small yacht or boat that only needs one, two or three people to sail it, usually for racing. There is the big Flying Fifteen provincials coming up in December where she will be competing”.

White said: “I guess that there are several things that Stel says often, and some of those are unprintable. But, she loves to greet all and sundry, even on the water, with an enthusiastic ‘Hello, hello, hello’.”

Estelle added: “If I could give one piece of advice to a large group of people, it would be to do something that scares you every day.”

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