16-year-old Jessica Watson of Australia has set sail on a solo voyage around the world, hoping to become the youngest person to ever circle the globe alone. Her trip has raised concerns, as some worry about her safety.
Watson will be out to sea for 8 months, on a bright pink yacht appropriately called "Ella's Pink Lady," and she plans to communicate with her family "radio and email, as well as updating her blog," according to The Guardian. It's a dangerous journey, and as Australia's Deputy Prime Minister Julie Gillard says, "I think a lot of Australians are nervous for Jessica. I'm nervous for her. But my words at this stage, given that she's determined to go, would be to wish her the best of luck and to urge her to keep safe. If, at some point, she's got to abandon the journey then the most important thing here is a young person's life."
Watson's parents also acknowledge that the trip is incredibly dangerous, but her father has gone so far as to say that denying his daughter a chance to chase her dream, after all of the training and preparation she's been through, would be more tragic than losing her to the sea: "It would be devastating if we lost her," Roger Watson says, "but I still think it would be worse to say 'no you can't go' because of that risk, because of what she's put into it."