SimplySailingOnline.com shows by example how easily you can eliminate stress, become more independent, raise your children in a safer environment (while spending more time with them, instilling values not based on the mighty dollar) and avoid the traps of commercialism. Because we live and sail simply, we have been wandering for 11 years with no intention of stopping. This is not a trip for us; it is our life, and I hope to share our success with stories of laughter and tears, as well as how-to tips and DIY projects for preparing, sailing and making a boat a home, so that others can join us.
August 1, 2011
For a year now we have been sharing tips, yarns, project details, recipes and more on Simply Sailing Online. In addition to this site there are many other venues where you can follow us, our anchorages, tips and stories of life onboard. Please allow me a little shameless self-promotion while I share these with you.
Several magazines have been receptive to publishing our stories. Some recent articles you may find interesting include August 2011 Blue Water Sailing. There is a 6-page piece on St. Croix, VI complete with local knowledge of how to find the cruising essentials such as water, trash disposal, diesel, hardware stores, restaurants and more. Of course there are also pictures and details about the attractions that give this island its status as "home" for many wandering sailors.
September will be the month to read about Eurisko and her crew is any of a number of magazines. Good Old Boat Magazine jokes that September/October 2011 is the McBride issue. Included in it is a lengthy piece on washing laundry onboard. There is also an article about our composting Air Head toilet, its installation and our concerns and thoughts after having it a year. Finally, (literally, since it is the last page of the magazine) there is a yarn about the many times we've been asked if we're OK because we were sailing where others would motor. Like Dave says, "Since when have sails become a distress signal?"
Cruising World's September 2011 issue contains a comparison of inflatable dinghies versus hard dinghies. You can imagine my take on this subject and the editor has said he is anticipating quite a reaction from the magazine's readers. I never said my opinions are always popular, but at least they get people talking and debating rather than merely accepting that what the majority of the cruisers around them are currently doing is the only way.
Also in September is an article in Blue Water Sailing about boat bugs. We've all had them. This piece reviews their characteristics, methods of prevention and extermination. And for those of you with really good memories, I will mention that November Blue Water Sailing will be a "Green Magazine." They will have several pieces about conservation including one of mine on energy conservation in the galley, specifically, ways to save propane. It may not seem so important if you are sitting at a dock in the States, but if you are in Antiqua where propane costs 10 times what it does in the States, or in Guadeloupe or Martinique where you must buy a $100 pigtail to get your tanks filled, conserving the propane you have becomes an important factor in maintaining your way of life.
This site features similar stories to those found in magazines. For those of you who have been with us since the beginning, thank you for your continued support. Anyone who may have joined us later or who is a random reader, here are some of the posts still available that you may have missed the first time around.
The links on the right provide you with a pull down menu where you will find a list of the posts available. Under TIPS there are posts describing the usefulness and methods for tying various knots. There are also some tips for transiting the ICW as well as living without a fridge. Water availability in the islands, crossing the Gulf Stream, kerosene storage, protecting your sails and preparing for a hurricane are all found under TIPS.
DIY includes larger projects. Our onboard shower, replacing chainplates, installing Celotex insulation along the hull, repairing dings with Dynel and building a cradle for storing your boat on the hard are all included in this section.
In PEOPLE and PLACES I share our experiences on Saba, St. John, Statia, Trinidad, the ruins of Coba, Mexico, Volcan Baru in Panama and of course St. Croix. There are also stories of sailors who have impressed us: the Wiccan whose boat re-anchored itself when it broke free in a hurricane and the artist who lives and paints aboard a 27-foot William Garden ketch among others.
YARNS and OPINIONS is where you'll find my take on cruisers vs. sailors. We compare those who do with those who say they wish they could. Working on the boat as opposed to sailing, accumulating stuff rather than enjoying the simple pleasures in life, following that damned magenta line rather than creating your own path are some of the themes of my opinion posts. There are also stories in this section about losing a dinghy at sea, getting struck by lightning, how simple is safer and what life is like offshore onboard Eurisko.
I have always found that the pieces that are the most fun to write are about the kids, much to their chagrin. I have even started asking their permission, now that they are all "adults" before I publish something about them. The typical response is, "What's it matter? You've been writing about us for years." Boat school, holidays onboard, the adaptability of kids and some of their unusual adventures and friends can be found in the KIDS section.
The last section is RECIPES. We are often asked, "What do you eat?" Here's an example of some of my favorites: the perfect chocolate cake, some foreign favorites and Dave's Famous Bean Burgers.
Along the top are tabs where you can contact us to ask specific questions, let us know what you'd like to hear about or express other concerns and opinions of your own. I love hearing from other sailors and wanders as well as those who are planning and scheming to join us.
Some of the tips found on this site and in magazines are included in MY BOAT LISTS, though many of the basics, tips and how-to advice have not been published elsewhere. If you like some tales with your tips, SIMPLY SAILING offers a little of each along with dozens of color pictures. Both books are available for Kindle through Amazon or the links at the right. Though they are Kindle books, they can be read on any PC. You can find the link for the free software that makes this possible on the same pages as the books at Amazon.com. I apologize, but the books are not available in paper.
As always, thank you for your continued support and encouragement. I hope some of what I write helps make life a little simpler and encourages those who would like to take the plunge but aren't quite ready yet.
Though I aim for Monday posts, Mother Nature and the gods of wifi don't always allow it. If you've not yet done so, click on the "like" button to the right for updates on Facebook. I will put a link on Facebook when the new posts are online.
MONDAY-ish it's time for a recipe. SPAM has long been known as a sailor's staple, but you'll be amazed by the delightful foreign dish that Dave has found to use it in.
Did you find something of interest? Consider donating $1.