Book Review: The Open Boat: Across the Pacific, by Webb Chiles

And since after reading Storm Passage I have become a huge fan of Webb Chiles, I decided to continue my sailing readings with Webb’s depiction of his second voyage, his bold attempt to cross the oceans in an open boat. And I was not disappointed – his adventures surpassed everything I could have imagined. His boat was capsized twice, he endured strong gales, experienced unique moments in the Pacific islands, and finally lost his boat and drifted for two weeks in his life raft before managing to come ashore on an island in the New Hebrides…. Fabulous stuff, although I…

Book Review: STORM PASSAGE: Alone Around Cape Horn, by Webb Chiles

This was my first modern sailing narrative and I could not have picked a better one! Webb Chiles, now a 5 time circumnavigator and the first one to circle the world in an open boat in the late 70s – early 80s, describes in a vivid and sometimes humorous manner his first attempt at rounding Cape Horn. In doing so with a leaky boat that required an enormous amount of bailing every day, he became the first American sailor to round the famous cape on solitaire. Born and raised far from the sea and completely self-taught in the art of…

Book Review: A Voyage For Madmen by Peter Nichols

This is by far one of my favourite sailing books. At some point I read about the craziest sailing competition that was organised in 1968, The Sunday Times Golden Globe race, the first non-stop, single-handed, round-the-world yacht race. Peter Nichols’ is a fabulous account of this event written from the perspective of all the 9 participants who registered for the start of the competition. Without any boat standards, any safety measures or without a fixed date for departure, this was truly a voyage of madmen, of nine different characters possessing different skills and crafts who competed against all odds for…

Never trust great deals when purchasing antifouling paint!!!

Last May I was over-thrilled when my friend Constantin Lascu, who was taking care of Mem Pas Peur, called me with some very good news – that he found a great deal for antifouling and primer. I was already keen to give Mem Pas Peur a good scraping and adorn her with new layers of paint at the beginning of a new sailing season and thus, without checking any other offers, I accepted on the spot. The name “International” already sounded familiar, in fact there were a couple of jars already on the boat from her former owner, Marc (the French sailor…

As the old saying goes, “All good things come to an end…” – Part 1

Such were my 2015 sailing season and my brief but rich experience of owning an excellent boat, Mem Pas Peur. But first things first. For lots and various reasons I haven’t been able to write a new piece in over a year. The last time I wrote something I was excited about starting a new sailing season with Mem Pas Peur, freshly painted on the bottom. Later I will also share a few thoughts about how to never trust a great deal when it comes to buying anti-fouling paint that should last one year (here). I had barely laid Mem…

That time of the year – Mem Pas Peur’s cosmetic treatment

After a quick chat with Constantin at the beginning of the week, I decided it was the right time to lift Mem Pas Peur out of the water and properly adorn her for the new sailing season. I already knew that the underwater hull was completely covered with shells, algae and myriad other small sea creatures. A good bottom scraping and two new layers of antifouling paint to last for a whole year were needed for quite some time. Not to mention that I was also curious to see if everything was in order down there since when I bought…

Black Sea Sailing Ep .2 – better later than never :)

In a previous post (Gorgeous September Sailing 🙂) I promised to share the short movie that Robert filmed with his drone during our wonderful sailing episode back in September. As it happens most of the times, it took me an awfully loooong time to get the footage from Robert, select a few shots and combine them with some other clips shot on the boat to produce a short movie. The end result resides below: Alas, the summer season is finally here and I am eagerly waiting for the first longer sailing trips to Mangalia, Sulina, Balchik and finally Istanbul :)….