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Real Life

Jessica Watson's solo sail journey around the world is getting the Netflix treatment, so we decided to uncover what her life is like today

She has an impressive list of achievements and counting.

By Faye Couros
On the day sailing prodigy Jessica Watson landed on the Australian coast after 210 days at sea, the whole country stopped to watch her yacht called Ella's Pink Lady glide into the Sydney Harbour.
It was a historical event to witness this Australian odyssey come to an end in 2009, which occurred three days before our heroines 17th birthday.
The Sunshine Coast native turned Aussie icon was the youngest solo sailor to circumnavigate the earth, without assistance or stopping.
Jessica pictures after she arrived home after her journey. Getty
Jessica was awarded the title Australian of the Year in 2011, and she wrote a book called True Spirit about her time out at sea.
The book and her journey is getting brought to life by Netflix, which is producing a film called True Spirit, and it will be filmed on the Gold Coast at Village Roadshow Studios.
Jessica will be immortalised on screen by Australian actor Teagan Croft, who has starred in Titans and The Osiris Child.
The Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk has spoken excitedly about the production, which is another title added to the long list of films being made in the sunny state a per the Herald Sun.
"Back in 2009 and 2010 when Jessica was battling the high seas and never giving up, we all watched on, captivated and inspired by her bravery, her know-how and her tenacity.
"My government is proud to have secured yet another screen production for Queensland, evidence that the production bonanza is gathering more momentum as word spreads about the multiple benefits of filming in our great state," said Ms Palaszczuk.
Jessica arriving home and giving a big wave to excited onlookers. Getty
Jessica is now 28-years-old, and it has been over ten years since she stepped onto land and straight into her parent's arms.
Jessica is still achieving inspiring milestones like higher education achievements, exciting career moves, and ambassador undertakings as an adult.
Here is the Aussie icons fascinating and joyous life in 2021.
Naturally, if you sail around the world in under a year at 16-years-old, you are something of an inspiration, and her journey has led Jessica into high profile roles at major institutions.
From 2011 to 2019, Jessica was a Youth Representative for the United Nations World Food Program, and she has presented as a motivational speaker for companies including Commonwealth Bank, Domain, IBM and JP Morgan.
In 2016, Jessica achieved something she maybe didn't quite think she would because, as she said on her Instagram post to mark the event, "Finally got to wear this funny hat! Despite running away from school for a few years."
The milestone in question is in regards to graduating from her Masters in Business.
The rest of the post read, "I've really come to appreciate and enjoy the incredible opportunity education is. Although it feels a little strange to be celebrating graduation when I'm already stuck into an MBA 🎓🎉."
"They're always like, 'You're that sailor! What are you doing in this meeting?'" Getty
A year later, Jessica took on her first role since leaving university as a consultant for the accounting firm Deloitte Australia, which meant she had to swap the sun in the Sunshine Coast for the clouds of Melbourne.
Since joining the company, she has been promoted to senior humans capital consultant.
She spoke to the Herald Sun about office life and how some of her colleagues initially found her presence a little confusing.
"It's quite interesting because people are often quite surprised to find me in an office. They can't quite put 2 and 2 together.
"They're always like, 'You're that sailor! What are you doing in this meeting?'" she said.
In the same year she entered the boardroom, she also released her sophomore book called Indigo Blue, a fictional novel about finding yourself and friendship.
Jessica in her graduation robes. Instagram
As expected, Jessica has achieved a lot with her already incredible life, and while some people may have sailed around the world and then called it a day, this titan has built a multi-hyphen career.
Of course, sailing is still her blood, and she is a brand ambassador for a Marine Safety app for boat lovers called Deckee.
The app provides local information, trip loggings, weather aids, official alerts and notices.
Last year, when Jessica was stuck in Melbourne under harsh Covid restrictions, The Sydney Morning Herald asked her how people can handle isolated life – after all, she is something of an expert.
She graciously provided the publication with a lot of advice for their readers, but one of her most poignant points was how she motivated herself out at sea when she was missing her family.
"Despite the fact that I genuinely loved the 210 days that I spent alone at sea, I'm also the first to admit that being cut off from loved ones for no good reason would be horrible. The sense of purpose the voyage gave me (whether that be ticking off a milestone or feeling that I was challenging perceptions of what a young girl is capable of), was motivation to push through the times when I badly missed my family.
"After a year stuck in Melbourne spending time with the sisters and fam is extra sweet." Getty
"Enduring anything is easier if there is a reason for it. And of course, in our current situation, there could be no simpler or more important purpose for our isolation – saving lives," she said.
She also tried to encourage people to appreciate the rare opportunity for solitude, despite the horrible impacts of a strict lockdown."I fully appreciate that concern for loved ones and the stress of economic impacts of the COVID situation may make this unrealistic for some, but for those who can, I'd encourage you to try and enjoy the solitude," she urged.
In December 2020, Jessica finally made her way out of Melbourne and to her family, and she commemorated the reconciliation with a sweet Instagram post.
"After a year stuck in Melbourne spending time with the sisters and fam is extra sweet. 🍬❤️.
"Heart goes out to anyone still separated from loved ones!," she wrote.
They are an adorable couple. Instagram
While her professional life is going from strength to strength, she has found support and love within her boyfriend.
From her telling Instagram posts, it seems Jessica is in a relationship with a gentleman called Cameron Dale.
The couple is quite private, but Jessica has shared some wholesome posts of them together in the past.
She marked a day out ice-skating in 2019 with a picture of her holding hands with Cameron in New York.
"Who knew @cameron.dale1 is annoyingly good at #iceskating 🤷 #bladesofglory," she joked.
She also posted some pictures of them enjoying the snowfall in Central Park.
"A little dusting of snow making a morning walk through New York's Central Park extra special 👌❄️⛄️🥶," she said.
"Who knew @cameron.dale1 is annoyingly good at #iceskating." Instagram
We may not have to wait too long for the adaptation of True Spirit because last week, the writer and director, Sarah Spillane, made an Instagram post to mark their early deliberations.
Sarah is pictured with Jessica standing on a lake and holding coffees while they discuss the film.
Jessica and Sarah having a meeting about True Spirit. Instagram
"Aquatic team meeting 🦆⛵️ @jessicawatson_93 #truespirit #netflix #girlpower," wrote Sarah.
We can't help but feel more excited for this female-led and empowering film to get onto our screens.

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