Better than Bacon

Most of us don’t have a Bacon Number. This, of course, is the number of connections it takes to link an actor to Kevin Bacon. What does Kevin Bacon or the concept of six degrees of separation have to do with cruising? Proximity. Access. Friend-making. Ghost-touching. Being human. Proximity The worldwide population of sailors is […]

Sailing mavericks, unapologetically motoring

sailboat at sunset

Sailors, like fisherman, can be a little boastful. Fishermen are better at it – complete with battle reenactment, culminating in outstretched arms indicating size. Sailors’ stories aren’t much different – a battle against the elements and with photographs! Of course, photographed waves appear small, so you have to double or triple the size to be […]

After years as nomads, returning to the USA

Dun colored cliffs on the back side of Block Island emerged from a hazy marine layer: our first sight of land as we approached New England. With each mile, landmarks and islets and buoys along the way tickled old memories of these waters where Jamie grew up racing, and where we met. Names remembered, but […]

Lessons learned when naming a boat

Our first cruising boat was a Hallberg-Rassy 352 named for the co-owner. “Andrea” didn’t mean anything to us, and we were eager to have a new name put a personal stamp on his boat that reflected our family. Deliberations focused on avoiding particular names, especially the common, the clichés (Second Wind), and the cutesy marine alliterations […]

The source of inspiration

A boat we met during our Pacific crossing recently finished their circumnavigation. That happens more frequently now as we have gone slowly, and those with fewer diversions or specific goals to complete a loop continue their march to the west. I’m reminded of what Alex Rust posted in his final update to the blog of Bubbles after completing […]

The dog ate my clearance papers

Jamie and I co-author a cruising column for 48° North, a Pacific Northwest regional boating magazine. Our article for October offers anecdotes internet technology on board. Love it or hate it, it’s certainly changed a great deal about cruising. Puget Sound residents can pick up 48° North in boaty outlets, but anyone can read the […]

A year in review: from Oz to mainland SE Asia

We recently crossed the one-year mark since departing Australia, and a relatively stationary period in our floating life. It was a banner year and prompted some reflection I posted a few stats on our Facebook page… here’s an expansion we mulled today, as we headed north up the west coast of the Malay peninsula. Nautical […]

Cruiser karma and gotong royong

Here in Bali, we are reminded again and again of the emphasis placed upon mutual aid: people helping each other out in a loose organization of community support known as gotong royong. When a farmer’s rice paddies are ready to harvest, the job is too big for one person to do alone; left to the […]

Moving aboard your floating home

There is no “right” way to move aboard and go cruising: the books and blogs are full of different stories that reflect individual approaches and circumstances. Our story is based on a joint dream, years and thousands of miles in our starter cruising boat before buying Totem, delaying our move aboard until shortly before departure, […]

Keeping the peace

This month’s raft-up topic looks into relationships on board and asks the question: how do you make a relationship work on board? Exhibit A: the happy couple… or are they?! Among the more common questions we get asked by non-cruisers is how we manage to live together in such a small space. At 47 feet, […]