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Somewhere between the Galapagos Islands en route to the Marqesas Group in the darkest of nights, at approximately six degrees south of the equator a sailboat is whispering along under full sail. The fresh south east trades are pushing her sleek hull through the coal black water at around eight knots. The man standing at the wheel, wearing ragged shorts only in the warm tropical breeze gently fanning him over the port quarter, helms his craft by starlight alone. All lights have been doused on this moonless night and even the masthead white light has been switched off.
Fixing his eyes on a star group which arcs back and forth over the masthead as it sways to the roll of the ocean, he has been sailing his yacht like this for an hour or more. He could put her onto autohelm, but is so absorbed in his task that he feels he could stand watch all night. Accompanying him is a pod of dolphins gambolling along and playing with this laggardly and sluggish thing sharing their watery world, which adds to the delight of the moment.
Surrounded by a three hundred and sixty degree inverted bowl he is totally confounded by the absolute multitude cornucopia of stars before him in this tiny quadrant of the ocean. How many more must there be that cannot be seen from this position? With no degrading light from any other source, the stars shine brightly and they are countless. Breathtaking in their abundance he comes to the conclusion that life exists elsewhere in the universe, other than just on our planet. Not that this is a new thought to him, but sailing in these conditions rams it home with greater significance and whilst carrying the feeling of being such a tiny little speck in the scope of things, he also feels very strongly to be part of the great flowing river of life. At this moment, absorbing the wonder, he would not want to be anywhere else on the planet.
Sailboat cruising provides many cathartic moments such as this, all character building and never to be forgotten. Bringing them together is what has led this author to write about his own sailing adventures in paradise.
‘Sailing Adventures in Paradise’ chronicles the many adventures of the author over several years cruising in the waters of the Caribbean and then into the oceans of both the Atlantic and Pacific. Detailing the many adventures, incidents, trials and tribulations that arose, most times unexpectedly, and how the crew overcame these adversities usually with panic initially, then calm purpose and persistence, most times in that order!
Told through the eyes of the boat, it introduces a refreshing and intimate insight of how life at sea on passage for lengthy periods can be a challenge, not only for the crew but the boat also, and how these can be overcome to lead into one of the most wonderful character building adventures to be had today at any age.
One old Sea Dog said to the author prior to setting off on the voyage that he would not necessarily be qualified to make the trip at the outset, but certainly would be by the time the sailboat voyage was over – in other words a sailor planning this sailing adventure would never know everything before leaving, but not to hang back – but be as best prepared as possible and get out there, leave port and set sail.
The ebook includes 101 dollar saving tips that planning voyagers would never think of before leaving port. These tips are hyperlinked into the narrative and could save cruising sailors many hundreds, if not thousands of dollars over the duration of their sailing adventure of a lifetime voyage.
Essential and most enjoyable reading for all armchair sailors and all those planning to sail off on their own yachting adventure over the horizon into the oceans of this beautiful planet of ours.