How lucky am I? I’ve been Liebstered a second time by my friend, the very talented blogger, Liesbet Collaert of Its Irie
Honored to accept!
Liesbet posed 10 questions to me and eight other Liebster recipients which I enjoyed answering while sailing from Samoa to Nuiatoputapu, Tonga.
1) What prompted you to start cruising?
I share the full story here, but to summarize, it was my love of the sea, my craving for adventure, and the loss of my best friend, Mary Davenport Cook, to breast cancer in 2010.
2) What is your ultimate goal with this adventure (reaching a certain destination, circumnavigation, personal achievement …)?
Circumnavigation is my ultimate goal but every stop along the way truly makes the journey as wonderful as reaching the final destination
3) Name five things you do every day on your boat that you wouldn’t do if you were to have a different lifestyle.
- Pump rather than flush the refuse out of our heads (toilets)
- Conserve Conserve Conserve – being a good little American, my fighting words used to be Consume, Consume, Consume. One of the reasons I went to sea was because I wanted to simplify my life. Life on board requires that we conserve precious provisions (water, electricity, fuel, food, and drink) as they become dear at sea. I still miss Bergdorf’s 5F and The Odeon, but I am enjoying my current life on-board
- Take it apart and putting it back together again – our provisions are stored underneath the beds, the salon, and in the lazerettes. We seem to rip the boat open every day to fix things or simply just to retrieve provisions.
- Sleep under mosquito netting
- Provide maid service
4) How do you make your relationship work onboard?
At sea, we are often together 24 x 7 with little space and no where to run, no where to hide.
When things get tough, I remind myself of all the great things The Captain does and that I have choice.
When that doesn’t work, the thought of serving jail time is a good deterrent to pushing him overboard (and besides, I think he could take me).
5) What makes you smile?
- Making new friends
- Running into old friends
- Traveling to new places
- Local children
- Taking street portraits
- Finding cool street art in unexpected locations
- The Captain’s cooking
- Good Internet connection
- The beautiful expansive sea on a long passage
6) What is the boat chore you dread most? Feel free to mention more than one!
Laundry. Always a bone of contention between The Captain and I.
I prefer to use laundromats or laundry services ashore. This allows me to contribute to the local economy and spend more time seeing the sites of the places I’m visiting.
However, prices in some locations are a bit usurious.
We’ve often compromised by paying to wash and hanging to dry. I think The Captain is softening. Yesterday, he agreed to have our laundry washed, dried and folded in Neiafu, Vava’u, Tonga.
7) What do you love about your floating home?
She fully kitted out, she sails like a knife through butter, and she allows us to change our backyard frequently without leaving home.
8) What would you change about your boat if money is not an issue?
Add another 30ft and an all male crew.
No really, if money wasn’t an issue, I’d sail all the way around non- stop. However, it’s likely I’ll need to return to work for a bit before completing my circumnavigation (only 181 degrees of longitude to go at this writing)
9) Which anchorage do you prefer: a snorkeler’s dream or a hiker’s paradise?
I prefer a bit of both, but if I have to choose, a snorkelers dream.
10) What has been your personal highlight since living aboard? And your personal nightmare?
Personal Highlight – Three Cancer survivors returning to sea post-treatment
- The Captain (returned to Amandla November 2012)
- Me (joining Amandla February 2013)
- Mark Kilty (returned to Irie August 2013)
… and Personal Nightmare? Facing myself. By aligning my life with my dream and going away to sea, I’ve removed most of the distractions, noise and excuses. But wherever I go, there I am. And sometimes, it’s not pretty.
Now, in keeping with the Liebster tradition, it is my turn to nominate cruising or sailing sites I deem interesting. However, as I wrote when I accepted my first Liebster, there are so many, that I can’t limit my love to just a few. So instead of punting it back (again borrowing from the eloquent words written by Behan Gifford on sailingtotem.com) I’m just going to say that there are some beautiful, inspiring blogs out there. I keep my favorites listed on my Sailing Links Page, and I hope you’ll turn there.