Movie review: Maidentrip

Continuing in the category of reviews-of-round-the-world-sailing-trips-by-someone-who-gets-seasick… I watched Maidentrip the other night, a documentary about a 14-year-old girl’s round-the-world solo voyage in a 38-foot sailboat. Aside from the nautical aspects of the voyage, in which the teenager displays far more prudence than most adults, the movie is kind of interesting from a legal point of view.  Laura Dekker was reared primarily by her Dutch father starting at about age 5 (according to the movie, the German-born mom went to live with a boyfriend and left the child [a rational financial decision in Europe, where obtaining custody and collecting child support may not be profitable]). The father was a sailing nut and boat-builder who allowed the girl to take trips commensurate with her skill but unconventional given her age. The Dutch government fought a 10-month lawsuit, ultimately unsuccessful, to try to prevent Dekker from embarking on her journey, which had been approved by both of her joint custodial/biological parents.

Note: the movie is available for streaming from Netflix.

Related: my posting about Wild Eyes (Abby Sunderland’s round-the-world attempt) and All is Lost

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