hitchhiking a boat across an ocean

We arrived in Gibraltar after most of the boats had already left for the Canaries. I'd been hitchhiking back and forth the Western Europe - Istanbul route several times before I could possibly think of setting foot at sea. So, we wound up here in mid-November, unaware of the weather that would be underway (which is to say: "the worst weather possible"). We spent several weeks here, like a small handful of the boats- stranded- camping in an undersized tent in some polluted beachside ruins of an economically-depressed town through some of the worst storms I've ever weathered.

Hitchhiking a boat consists of walking around a marina and talking to everyone you possibly can, hoping that someone will be going your direction, and that they'll want to take you along for the ride.

Now we're onboard, below-deck, still trying to stay dry, keep warm, and waiting for the winds. We've found a 21-meter-long Polynesian-style catamaran with a Maori name sailing under a Swedish flag. The other crew consist of two brothers who, a year earlier, had no real sailing experience. Now it seems like they have everything under control and know exactly what they're doing (and what needs to be done). There is always work to be done. Everyday, some pieces and parts are in need of repair. When it rains, if anything gets wet, it stays wet. If your socks get wet and you leave them in your room, the whole room fills up with moisture and in a few hours, everything feels damp. The pillows and mattresses grow moldy easily. If there are two or three days of rain, you'd need a whole week of sun to clear up and dry out even the smallest things.

I mostly stay in the kitchen. I'm the chef. They mostly ate meat ("pasta and bacon") for every meal before, but I haven't heard a single complaint over the vegetarian food. On the contrary, they're always excited to hear the words "Breakfast time!" "Dinner time!" "Cake time!" and so on.

Hopefully, in a day or so, the winds will turn around and we can finally head out. I've had enough rain for a lifetime.


robino's picture

totally love their stories~!

wonderful you two found a boat! Fantastic. I also enjoyed reading the stories on the site of the 2 guys, like this one for example, about navigating through twisters and the totally drunk sailing dude, and how they met you :)

Take care!