Archive | July, 2014

Siobhan in the pool

Finding bliss in stagnant cruising

A month ago we were headed to Borneo. Thanks to continued engine problems, we’ve been sitting in Puteri Harbour instead. Cruising plans torpedoed, Totem is shacked up at the monthly rate. A blog follower and friend wondered what happened to us the last few weeks. He nailed it, too, understanding that being parked makes my inner cruiser feel caged: I […]

Examining raft contents. <a href="" target="_blank">Photo (c) Michelle Elvy</a>

Life raft: more than two four letter words

How do you choose a life raft? We looked for the best raft available. That wasn’t enough. As dewy-eyed gonna-be cruisers, we focused on choosing a superior product for that moment of (heaven forbid) dire need. We looked at independent research reports, read books and blogs about the life raft experiences of other cruisers, and met with all […]


The best sails for downwind cruising

What’s the difference between a drifter, a gennaker, a code zero, and a screecher? Where does a spinnaker fit in? And if you’re a cruiser, what sail should you use for downwind sailing, anyway? There is no single “best,” because everything on a boat is a compromise, and individual styles/needs vary, but we have some […]

lotion on table children

DIY: essential oils on board

We try to keep life simple on Totem: if we can make something ourselves, that’s always a better option than buying. Less waste is created, something on board is usually reused, and there’s probably more cash in our pockets. A lot of the everyday things I use have been made with essential oils. Because, hey, if you can also make something smell […]

© 2007-2018 Sailing Totem. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.