Archive | December, 2015

upwind to kuching

Port tack blues: thoughts on comfortable cruising

Flat water and a consistent breeze provided glorious sailing back in Madagascar. Daily diurnal winds power our passage south on a port tack in the morning and a starboard tack in the afternoon, with a brief period of calm between the directional switch.  Totem’s comfortable motion in these conditions have made meal preparation in the galley […]

goofing around on solstice

Indian Ocean lookback: people, the best of IO cruising

The Indian Ocean looms large in the minds of many sailors: it’s a challenge, the daunting stretch of water (followed by the big miles of the Atlantic) that prompts many to park their boats in Australia or Southeast Asia and say “done.” It’s a kaleidoscope of history, languages and landscapes. And yes, it was challenging, […]

Indian Ocean GE track

Indian Ocean lookback: the best gear over ~7,000 miles

Sailing across the Indian Ocean made 2015 a big year for nautical miles under Totem’s keel:  6,901 of them, in fact, from the time we left Malaysia in February until we arrived in South Africa in October.  It had a little bit of everything: light winds. Big winds. Really big current! Weeks among uninhabited islands, and […]

Mexico sunset

Easy decisions and new questions about sailing home

It was a snap decision, but pointing to the US in 2016 suddenly made sense (the kicker was learning of people we love with poor health). From that one follow a myriad of other decisions. Here’s are some clarifications, and what we know, and what’s keeping me up at night. We aren’t going to stop […]

family photos

It’s time to go home

One of the hardest parts of cruising is being far away from people we love. It’s especially hard to be far away and during their times of need, when we can’t be present with support. But we also miss sharing everyday experiences: the laughs and events, celebratory or ordinary, that build memories with our faraway friend and […]

shell lights rb

Holiday decorations aboard: crafting a shell light

Cruising boats have finite storage space. While we haven’t gotten to the point of taking something off for every item that comes on, there are understood rules that acquisitions should have at last one function – or require serious justification! When we choose a souvenir and keepsake, it’s often carefully picked with an eye to how it can […]

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