KATIE & JESSIE on a boat

aboard lovely Louise…


22 Comments

The Unknown Odyssey

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Hello there. It’s been a little while. I still exist. So does Katie… and Reggie, and believe it or not so does Louise. I still have two legs, two arms and walk upright. My torso is still short and I remain 5’2” on a good day. My blonde hair has faded brown and my brown skin has become transparent. The freckles on my face got bored and took off but the moles are here to stay. I don’t eat like a cave woman anymore, but I kind of still dress like one. I am delighted every time I log on and reminded that I have a job to do – to entertain. It would only be fair for me to provide my readers with more chapters because like you, I don’t want it to be over.

You may appreciate a little insight on land-life and how it has thrown both of us for a loop, and not a “great” loop, but a lesser great loop without navigation or guidebooks. Wind and waves still come from every direction but instead of floating with the elements I am at an awkward stand-still. Which leads me to the big question. Who do you listen to when you are incapable of making decisions and you can’t hear yourself think? I don’t have a clue where my indecisiveness stems from and it is beginning to piss me off. I try and listen to myself but I can’t find my ears. When trying to make decisions everyone always says “follow your heart”, but I seriously can’t find that either.

There is so much noise. It doesn’t matter how quiet the room is – it never truly feels quiet. I use this word broadly. Noise is this computer. It is my  iphone. It is Netflix. It is the bar down the street. It is my social life. It is my family. It is running errands. It’s the gym. It is material items. It is paying rent. It is bills. It is health insurance and taxes.  It is the rat race. It is trying to keep up. All of these are unsolicited voices that manage to construe my thought process. It’s funny, the whole time I was boating I thought I was looking for answers. Like Christopher freaking Columbus. Well I wasn’t looking for Christopher, but for something…anything. Whether it was a place, a person, or to potentially fall off the edge. Now I can’t help but see the obvious, the exploration was about myself and nobody or anyplace else. It was a journey out of selfishness, and curiosity. Here I am back home, in a beautiful house, still feeling selfish and curious because I now know what can come of allowing yourself to be nothing but those two things. Magic. Maybe selfish isn’t the right word, or maybe it is.  Lets call it “self-serving”.  There is an appropriate time in life to have these traits and even though I feel as if mine should be suspended I want them to last forever. But that’s not how the world works.

I looked up the definition of “Millennial” today. This cracks me up.

“Millennial optimism is entering into adulthood with unrealistic expectations, which sometimes leads to disillusionment” 

When I read this sentence I can’t help but replace the word “Millennial” with “Jessica And Zevalkink”

“Jessica And Zevalkink’s optimism entering into adulthood with unrealistic expectations, has lead her to severe disillusionment” 

FUN FACT: My middle name is not “And” but when I was little I thought every person had a first AND  last name. My middle name is actually “Anne”. Get it? Every time I heard my full name I thought they were saying “and”, not “Anne”

Which brings me to another thought, one that consumes my mind more than most subjects. Why doesn’t my generation know about “America’s Great Loop”? How has this trail of waterways not become the new Pacific Crest Trail…the new Camino De Santiago… the new Eurotrip? Is it because it involves a boat? Do boats scare people? My generation is adventurous. We are wild. We are constantly dissatisfied and reaching for the possibly impossible. People jump off cliffs in squirrel suits, kayak across oceans, bike across countries, walk pilgrimages, backpack foreign countries alone, climb mountains, you name it. We want the highest, the fastest, the longest, we want to break records, we want to be remembered. We want to feel, and often putting ourselves in danger is the greatest way to feel because overcoming fear is one of life’s highest rewards. Some of us choose to never conquer it and are happy inside four walls. Those of us who choose to look it in the eye, become addicted. So back to my original question – why isn’t “The Loop” a known revelation? Is it not wild enough? Is it because It takes place right here in America? Is it because it involves moving at five miles an hour? Is it because it involves a boat? Why is this unknown by my peoples?

I have been working closely with Kim Russo the director of AGLCA (Americas Great Loop Cruising Association). She is wondering the same thing. There have been very few 20-somethings to complete the Loop. We are trying to understand why us millennial’s have yet to catch on to this incredible odyssey, and how we can increase its’ awareness. My selfish side wants to keep it all a secret. My curious side wants to share it with the world and is eager to get other youngins on board. This is “Not your parents trip”.

Sure, there are some obvious answers here about why so few are interested – Finances, lack of experience, fear, etc. But those are common ground hurdles that we share as a population. The only difference is how we individually deal with them. Those three hurdles were a part of our every single day, for two years. But we adapted to those hurdles. Our legs became longer and the leaps became hops. We learned how to budget and how to become minimalists. We got experience by experiencing. We overcame fear by feeling it so often we confused it with excitement. Anyone can do this. Anyone.

I am no motivational speaker but I am certainly motivated to bring awareness to the Great Loop and to help encourage others to consider this an option. I invite you to join me for an AGLCA seminar Saturday, April 18 during which I’ll share the why’s and wherefores – why Katie and I traveled the loop, how we did it, how we financed it, our scariest moments, the good the bad and the ugly, and most importantly how we have changed because of it.

Come hang out. Have a beer. Pick my brain and I’ll pick yours. It will be great.

Click here for DETAILS. 

SIDENOTES:

  • I still reside in Traverse City, MI. Working part time as a personal trainer. Part time bartender. Part time wedding photographer. And when I am not working on being all of those women, I am working on being the other one I want to be… a cave-woman, who sits in front of her desk and writes till a book is born.
  • Katie moved to June Lake, California. Together with her handsome boyfriend they have four dogs. Yes Reggie is one of those dogs. Captain Reg & Katie are very happy to be back in the mountains, where space is unlimited and you can pee anywhere. She will be working at a charming coffee shop & hotel at the entrance to Yosemite National Park. Most likely spending all of her free time running around with four legged creatures and saving birds n’ things.
  • We recently met up half way in between CA, and MI and spent a few days in Colorado together.  We are still best friends, and understand every single thought that goes through each others head. In fact this entire winter not only were we dealing our own adjustments, indecisiveness, and decision making, but each other’s as well. It was like double estrogen. Awful right? I didn’t realize how much we had been feeding off of eachother. I texted her recently and said “I say this in the nicest way possible – “I am so glad you’re gone because I can finally think for just myself. I didn’t realize how much work this was.” We laughed. She completely agreed. Katie and I live parallel lives. Doesn’t matter if I’m here and she’s there. In fact when we met up in Colorado we had the exact same sickness (razor throat ) at time of arrival. Not long before that we shared insomnia on the same night. And in no time we will be buying donkeys for a trek across America. Because America is really cool.
  • A few months back, we went to an audition in Detroit for “The Amazing Race” One of the weirder things I have ever done.
  • I am continuing to write my series with “Cruising Outpost” So keep buying issues!!!!!
  • Also keep an eye out for the May/June issue of SAILING magazine, you will find us inside and we are beyond flattered to be a part of this one !!!
  • Louise has moved on to new ownership. I will have an entire story about this in the near future, but please stay tuned because not only did they buy Louise to DO THE LOOP, but they are also bringing A DOG (OR TWO) !!!  The Louise legacy continues !!!!

THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU TO EVERYONES WHO KEEPS COMING BACK, AND TO THOSE WHO HAVE BEEN HERE SINCE THE BEGINNING. WITHOUT YOU I WOULD BE….. I DONT KNOW WHAT I WOULD BE…. A HOT MESS.

PLEASE EMAIL ME IF YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS ABOUT THE UPCOMING EVENT. I’D ALSO LOVE SOME FEEDBACK ON WHY YOU THINK THE GREAT LOOP IS AN UNKNOWN ODYSSEY AND HOW WE CAN HELP CHANGE THAT.

LOVELOVELOVE

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17 Comments

Will there be a book???

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Katie and I took on the Chicago Boat Show a few weeks back and I was blown away at the interest thats been shown in our adventure and in The Great Loop. When I was finally accepting that all of this was over… being able to do presentations and continue to talk to others about how they can do it too, reminded me that it’s not actually over at all. In fact, it’s like we are starting all over again – same subject – different classroom – kind of thing. Huge thank you to the incredible Bob Bitchin and his beautiful wife Jody of Cruising Outpost Magazine for hosting us.

To be honest, it was frustrating at first to talk non-stop about something that you did – versus something that you are doing… which sounds kind of ungrateful.  I didn’t like hearing myself talk about myself. Kind of like that drunk guy at the end of the bar rambling about something legendary he did 30 years ago, no one cares, and no ones listening. While we were traveling, in the midst of it all, talking about it was appropriate and in context; Two haggard girls pull up to a dock in a tiny sailboat with dog – easy conversation starter. People asked, we told. Two regular girls pull into the city in a Honda Accord, in clean clothes with dog – boring. But people still asked, and we still told. What I am saying is, I never expected to continue to talk about my life in past tense as often as it was talked about while it was happening. I never expected to be able to light a match under a few people’s asses hot enough to send them boat shopping and Great Loop researching. I never expected my voice to be the one speaking in a huge silent room full of people. I never expected to be capable of impacting anyone, having answers to their questions, or helping them get one step closer towards their dream. This entire time I have been looking for that impact – to be hit by a flaming meteorite revelation telling me exactly who I am and what I am supposed to do. I have been looking for answers to my own questions. I have been looking for the person who can get one step further to my goals. And for just a moment, I felt I could be to others – what I have been looking for for me. Like a stupid kitten chasing my own tail… I stopped running in circles and looked up. Am I making any sense what so ever? Sorry if this is getting confusing. What I am trying to say, is thank you. Thank you to everyone who came out to listen, to ask, to support,  and to encourage.

For months the infamous question has been “Whats next?”

Followed up by “Will there be a book?”

And for months my answer has been “I don’t know”

Followed up by “I don’t know” While I silently throw F bombs around in my brain for not having an answer.

I mean really? I’ve had over two years of sittin and thinkin on a boat and all I can come up with is “I don’t know” ?!?!?!?!?! WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME?

The answer itself has been spelled out in front of me every time I’ve read it, and I am just now seeing that it’s simply been a word puzzle. You all have just been messing with me, haven’t you?

QUESTION : “What’s next?” Will there be a book?”

ANSWER : “What’s next? There will be a book!”

All I had to do was  switch around the “will” and “there” to “there” and “will” while swapping out the question mark with an exclamation point. And there ya have it, WAM BAM THANK YOU MAM.

“There will  be a book.”

Geez. My apologies for taking so long to see the writing on the wall. If you continue to be patient… and I mean really patient, there will be a book. Stubbornly I do not like asking for help, and will reroute myself in many inconvenient ways to avoid asking for it. But I’m going to suck it up – I am going to ask for help.  Because for this project I will need it. There are several things you can help Katie and me with to support us in the book publishing process:

1) Attend our next presentation – open to the public TOMORROW Feb 5th, at 7:45 at the Elks Club,625 Bay Street, Traverse City, MI 49684  (TELL ALL YOUR FRIENDS)

2) Listen to our live podcast Friday, Feb 6th at 10:00 AM here: http://www.blogtalkradio.com/aglca  If you miss it, listen to the recording after-the-fact at that same site, or download it from iTunes. Just search AGLCA on iTunes to find it. (TELL ALL YOUR FRIENDS) 

3) BUY A T-SHIRT ALL PROCEEDS FUNDING THE PRINTING/PUBLISHING/DISTRIBUTING OF “THE BOOK” (we don’t know what it’s called yet any suggestions?) T-shirts are hand printed by Katie Smith at Michigan Rag CO. (TELL ALL YOUR FRIENDS)

Your support is everything. Without it my answer remains “I don’t know” But with it I confidently say “There will be a book!!!!!!!!!”

The ball is already rolling, but it’s heavy, and I need help pushing it.

Thank you : ) Email me with any questions… comments… complaints or whatever ya got. Jesszevalkink@gmail.com

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www.jessietakespictures.com


20 Comments

PRESENTATION TIME

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PHOTOGRAPHY // ABBEY MOORE

First of all, a huge thank you for all the positive feedback we’ve received after finally posting the “homecoming” post… which clearly I had been avoiding. And I mean it when I say HUGE thank you… HUGER than the two silly words “thank” and ” you” could ever express. And yes, I know “HUGER” is not a word. But you get it.

To everyone we met along the way… to every one who leant a hand, to everyone who has shared our story with others… and to everyone who completely randomly stumbled upon this blog. Receiving emails from strangers who had never heard of “The Great Loop” and who are now interested in traveling it, is fantastic. That is my whole purpose here, re-introducing this adventure to my generation, and to those who never even knew it existed. It is possible. If Katie and I made the full circle without sinking a boat, trust me, so can you.

Second of all, I bring to you exciting news… we are doing a presentation on our adventure for the very first time Tuesday, Jan 13 at the Glen Arbor Township hall 7:00 PM !!!!(Leelanau County, MI). Condensing two years into 30-45 minutes is an adventure in itself. Quite frankly we are tempted to just tell silly stories until you are all baffled that the two of us actually came out alive. Weaved in with some of our best and worst of days, you will get a clear over-view of the logistics… with time to ask us those questions you have secretly been wanting to know. Lets go ahead and get two questions out of the way that no one ever dares to ask…

“Where did you go to the bathroom?”  –  A bucket.

“Did you ever get bored and kiss?”   –  Seriously? No.

The Glen Arbor Women’s Club is hosting us, and it would be so great if you could join. HOWEVER, if you can’t, there is yet another opportunity to listen in the following weekend at the Chicago Boat Show! Look for us at the “Cruising Outpost” booth.

CHICAGO BOAT SHOW (McCormick Place, downtown Chicago)

FRIDAY 16TH :

Cruising Outpost booth 6:00-7:00 PM

SATURDAY 17TH:

Cruising Outpost booth 1:00-2:00 PM

Seminar Room 2:15 – 3:00 PM

 

Email me with any questions jesszevalkink@gmail.com

SEE YA’LL THERE!!!!!!

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40 Comments

WE DID IT!!!!!!!

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Katie, Reggie, Louise and I completed America’s Great Loop on September 4th, 2014. Crossing our wake just north-east of Northport Point, my stomach was in knots as I processed that it was the last day. I didn’t write in my journal for 5 days because I was having a hard time understanding what I was actually feeling, I was drawing blanks. It’s been nearly 4 months and I am still unsure If I can find the right words, hence my reluctancy to write this post. From the moment I got home, I stopped writing, I stopped reading, I stopped looking at the clouds, I stopped appreciating where I was, and suddenly 4 months passed and I don’t think I have accomplished a thing. Today is the last day of the year, and the first day I am realizing that it is is all in the past. Mission complete : )

I thought it would be fun to reveal my very first, and last journal entries

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This photo was the morning we left Northport, fueling up and saying our goodbyes. We look like babies.

September 4th, 2012  // Leland, MI

“Sitting on the dock in Leland. Cannot figure out how to start this journal for the life of me, I’ve never been one to write. English was my least favorite class. Last Fall Katie and I decided to buy a boat, and sail it to the Bahamas. Today we left. And for some reason, I am more relaxed right now than I have been all summer. I am happy. I wonder if it will last. Reggie is eating flies. Katie is fixing our amateur dock-line situation, Ben and Tucker are grilling us a bass dinner. This is the beginning. I have zero answers to my millions of questions. I don’t know where we will end up, or if we will ever make it home. I don’t know how we are going to make money. I am impressed we even made it here today without hitting something. The only thing I know is that I have a new home now, and it sails.

When we rounded Northport point and I took the last look at my little town, the only thing clear was that I haven’t a clue what I am doing. But I am okay with it. I know we will be okay. I know we will mess up. But it’s okay. In two days we will be in Muskegon to un-step our mast and cross to Chicago. As much as I am looking forward to Katie and I being on our own, and figuring things out together, I am not looking forward to saying goodbye to Ben – who will be getting off the boat in Muskegon. I don’t know when I will see him again. I don’t expect him to wait. If I linger on the subject it makes me queasy.

Quickly we are becoming resourceful. Peeing off the stern to save room in our holding tank, and trapping bugs by duct taping them to the ceiling.  The return fuel line even popped off and diesel was everywhere in the engine room. Ben fixed it before I even registered what the problem was and when he asked me what I would have done if he wasn’t there I said ‘ Shit. I don’t know.’

This is fun. I wonder whats next.”

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Angry skies on our last leg home.

September 2nd,  2014 // Sturgeon Bay, MI

“I’ll never forget this day.  I have given up. I’m crumbling like a stale muffin. Screaming like a boiling tea pot. Mother nature does NOT want us to make it home, she has dictated every decision we have made as incorrect. With 34 miles to travel from Mackinac to Beaver, we left the harbor knowing it wasn’t going to be a pleasant ride. At this point home is around the corner, if something goes wrong – I can call the wizard, even though he probably wouldn’t answer the phone. Every degree we turn the wind follows, every tack we make is pushing us backwards. In 8 hours, the Mackinac Bridge is the exact same distance behind us. When we passed underneath the structure, it was magnificent. Now I just want it to go away. By 7 pm we give up, darkness is closing in, Beaver Island is too far. A mushroom cloud is taking over half of the sky. Its been creeping on us all afternoon and at this point we are being stalked. The wind continues to increase nearly stopping us in our tracks. We divert to “Sturgeon Cove”.  The change of course lays Louise on her side and we fly forward moving the same speed as the storm clouds. We can’t outrun them anymore. The sky has turned Mammatus, my favorite of all clouds, although it represents nastiness. We set anchor in the cove, which is not at all a cove, exposed in every direction but one. In the cockpit I am stiff, perplexed – I am done. Spending the a few days with our Mothers on Mackinaw was so comforting, I could taste home, making these last 3 days unbearable. I just want to be there. Right now is the most beautiful sunset I have ever seen, which is kind of making me angry. The sky has been raping us all day, and suddenly it wants to cuddle.”

I really had myself convinced I was over it, ready to be home, ready to move on. Over the last 4 months, it is clear to me that my frustrations were mistaken. I was only hating that it was all coming to an end. I spent two years figuring out my role on the water, and suddenly I had to do it all over again on land. I didn’t want to start over. I spent all my time thinking about what my life on land would be like once I got home, and now here I am spending all my time thinking about what my life would be like if I never came home. Reading back on this now makes me laugh. Sometimes things only make sense in retrospect.

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Two days later, we round Northport Point on a cloudy day wearing nothing but smiles. Well not really, we had clothes on. We knew the “dad’s” would be zooming our direction in the Pantera at any moment and kept a close eye on the horizon.  Katie’s phone rung, it was her Dad, “Hey girls, we broke down we gotta hop on the Mastercraft, but keep on coming.”  We found this hilarious and envisioned throwing a line to the broke down “Pantera” and towing them back to the marina for our grand finale. I mean what are the chances that the dads break down on their way to welcome home their daughters? Silly question. The chances are good, very good.

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In no time, we spot 4 jackasses ( I say that with love ) hooting and hollering like teenage boys. My dad was driving the Master-craft at what looked like full throttle. We immediately start laughing so hard we’re crying. They keep coming towards us, and my Dad circles around so close to the cockpit he drenches us with spray. They were just as excited as we were, if not more. They were proud. We were proud. The moment was better than the one I had dreamt up in my head since day one, instantly erasing any negative I had ever felt. We did it.

WE DID IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

We did it.

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To my readers… thank you for coming back time and again. You are the our greatest source of encouragement.

There is so much more I have to say.

So many people to thank.

This blog is not over yet.

We have several presentations coming up this month, and I will keep you updated on the when & where.

HAPPY NEW YEAR.

 

WE DID ITTTTTTTTTTT!!!!

 


23 Comments

No wonder men have such a hard time understanding women.

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 FOX ISLAND // AUGUST 26

“My Imagination doesn’t run wild like It used to. Last time I was here I pretended this rock was my castle, and when I got bored of that I played “animals” with my sister. Now, I’m laying here with my headphones in, feeling like this is completely normal – as if it were my own back yard. Mostly trying to understand how it took us nearly two years to get here.”

“I couldn’t sleep last night because I lay in bed writing a book in my head until it kept me awake so long I had to pick up a real one.”

“I’ve noticed I avoid putting extremely honest words on paper. If I don’t write them – I don’t feel them.”

“There are only three boats anchored here. OH, probably because the wind is hauling ass out of the one direction the books specifically advise you NOT to anchor here in. If sketchy, rocky, windy, and rough channels don’t scare us anymore, I am unsure what does. Not even the spiders we share this house with, the snakes we share our bath with, or the poison ivy we share the woods with.”

“Going home. That’s what scares me.”

 

ENROUTE TO BLIND RIVER // AUGUST 27

“Pissed. I have never been so cold. Neither of us have any more layers to put on. I can’t wait to crawl into a warm home. 2.5 knots into a 15 knot head wind. Why are we even trying? We should turn around. But the thought of backtracking drives me insane. Bad attitude today.”

“We spend the morning whining and bitching, which ultimately made it hilarious because we both know that we don’t have a damn thing to actually whine or bitch about.”

“We tacked back and fourth until were got so frustrated we full throttled dead into the wind and waves to make it to Blind River. We are so stupid.”

“My face is burning. My finger and toes and are in the de-numbing tingling phase. I am done.”

“Katie got so pissed at me when we walked into the town of Blind River. She is scary when she is pissed, and not worth arguing with. It all had to do with “who had the right directions to get into town.” She thought she was right, I thought I was right, and when I was trying to make light of the situation she said she didn’t want to talk about it anymore. But the way in which the words came out of her mouth, “I don’t want to talk about it anymore” was like a gun shot to the chest. We can’t get along all the time. This is the final stretch. We are bound to break at some point”

 

AUGUST 28 // EN-ROUTE TO AMERICA – CROSSING THE NORTH CHANNEL

“TODAY. IS. A. NEW. DAY. LETS. START. OVER.”

“The sky is icy blue, not a cloud in it. The breeze is on the nose again but no stronger than I could push air out of my own lungs. We are both dressed like we are about to go flying down a ski hill. If I close me eyes I am on a chairlift, but I left my mittens at home.”

“We don’t sleep anymore. We have become goo brains whose minds are running marathons through deserts, mountains, and valleys and apparently Great Lakes.”

“Only a matter of hours until we cross the imaginary line that separates two countries.”

Patrick is driving today. I am so cozy in the cockpit after bringing my entire bed outside. Both of us have a book in hand, and feel the need to be nowhere else. If I am not okay with anything, it is that I have spent my last days unable to talk myself out of a crappy attitude. Look at where I am.”

“I think every day that I write I contradict myself. I make no sense. No wonder men have such a hard time understanding women.”

AUGUST 29 // DRUMMOND ISLAND

“The customs man showed up in his combat boots and gun on his hip. If not for his costume he would come across as a very nice man, but the suit beefs him up to be a tough action figure. He didn’t go anywhere besides the cockpit. I was nervous he was going to inspect the plumbing. It’s been broken for some time. If we were to get hit with a ticket for that, it’s on me because I am technically the plumber in this here house.”

AUGUST 30 // DE-TOUR, MICHIGAN

“Less than 100 miles from crossing our wake and we are stuck in a town called DeTour, Michigan. How Ironic” – Katie

“Lake Huron was not welcoming this morning. The waves grew larger. The rain fell harder. The wind wanted us to stay in Canada. We were in no mood to experiment.”

“Every once and a while we make good decisions. Like to tie up here in DeTour. A thunderstorm kept us wide-eyed and wired for 4 hours and the thought of being anywhere but here was disturbing. It’s the loudest and most intense thunder I have heard since being in the Bahamas. Thunder crackled so loud I felt like I was laying inside an egg shell that could crack open at any moment.”

“Our goal is to make it to Mackinaw Island by Monday, where we will meet our mothers who will arrive via ferry. We have two days, and it looks as though a weather window will get us there with ease. I have not seen my Mom since Christmas. Enough stuff has happened between then and now it feels like years.”

“We were on 7 & 4 news last night in Michigan !!!!! What?!?!?!?!”

 

AUGUST 31 // LES CHENEUAX ISLANDS – MICHIGAN

“Docked in Cedarville next to Uncle Dave and Aunt Connie. How wonderful it feels to reunite with these friends who helped us get ready for this trip since day one. I love them. Now I truly feel close to home.”

“Mother nature was so bi-polar yesterday. Waves. Rain. Fog. Sun. Heat. No rain. No clouds. Flat water. More rain. More waves. And then sun again. Mother Nature and I are on the same level – all over the freakin place.”

“At one point today we cruised at 6 knots, sails up, calm glassy rollers pushing us forward, warm air and sunshine. And for a moment, I never wanted it to end. I knew where I was, I knew who I was, I knew exactly what I wanted. It has been a long time since I had that feeling, I forgot it could exist.”

“The rain started falling. Hard. But it was warm rain. I turned the music up louder as the rain fell harder. I loved every drop.”

“Tomorrow, we get to see our MOMMIES !!!”

 

SEPTEMBER 1 // Mackinac Island

“We sailed into Mackinac at the exact same time our Mothers came flying in on the ferry. When we saw the ferry coming we turned around to parallel them. The moment we spotted two little ladies jumping up and down in the top deck flailing their arms, Katie and I both started jumping up and down laughing and crying at the same time. Within seconds the wake of the ferry rocked us so hard we both fell over and disappeared into the waves and laughed even harder. It never crossed my mind I might cry when seeing my Mom after all this time – but obviously her being there meant more to me than I realized. ”

“Only three days left.”

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We won a Grammy.

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HI YA’LL. Katie and I have been nominated twice for the “Liebster Award” by alwaysgoblog.com as well as sailingwanderer.com. This is an award granted to bloggers – from bloggers. A fabulous way to share stories, and get connected. Helping promote each others blogs goes to show how the cruising community extends a hand on and off of the water. Thank you to everyone who has shared our site with others. Having this blog through our travels connected us with so many people we wouldn’t have otherwise been connected with. The power of the internet is so insane it kind of creeps me out (in a good way) LOVELOVELOVELOVELOVE – spread it.

So here’s the deal. The person who nominates you asks a series of questions. In return, you nominate other bloggers and ask them a series of questions.

 

QUESTIONS from CECELIA POTTS of alwaysgoblog.com

What do you tell people when they tell you they, too, have always wanted to live on a sailboat? It’s not as charming as it seems. But I’d encourage it. I wish more people – young people – wanted to give it a try.

The one cruising memory that comes to mind when you’re looking out an airplane window is: 

What keeps you awake at night when you’re on the boat?  Well my ex-boyfriend of course. Accidentally touching feet in the v-berth. Nightmares of life on land. The halyard smacking the mast. The anchor chain. The rocking. The rotted bulkhead creaking. Water bottles rolling around by my head. The temperature anytime it’s not 72 degrees… so pretty much everything.

Dumbest thing you’ve done (or are still doing) on the boat? TRY TO BE A PLUMBERThere are honestly too many to count. I hit several rocks in Canada. I am a hot mess when it comes to fenders, throwing lines, tying knots, and righty-righty/lefty-loosy concept.

Any books or movies that one must simply binge on that highlight the cruising experience? Katie, could you please enlighten us?

Boats are small spaces. How do you you regain peace after a small battle with your crew? Hahahahaha. The answer is simple – don’t battle. Not enough space for karate. You are nothing without your crew. You need them. Compromise. Agree to disagree. If you are single handed – you are superhuman.

Do you have tan lines? At one point, we could both be completely naked and anyone nearby would assume we had bikinis on. Currently I am all one color – white, like, whiter than Caucasian.

What would you do if you had monkey butlers at your disposal for a day? I do, her name is Katie. Kidding. That monkey would deliver me answers every time I have a question about something… which is all day everyday. They would also be diesel mechanics.

What surprised you most about choosing this lifestyle? How little one needs to be happy.

What’s next? If I knew I probably wouldn’t tell. It’s a surprise – even for me.

 

 

QUESTIONS from BILL REGAN of sailingwanderer.com.

Why the heck do you want to live on a boat anyway? Because it’s much more challenging than living on land. When I am on land I can’t help but think about how easy everything is. Boat life toughens you up a little bit. Just getting groceries is like solving an equation, but on land – it is a brainless activity. If you abide by mother natures rules, and if you are patient, there is no greater freedom than living aboard.

What is your favorite meal onboard? Can of Trader Joe’s turkey chili with lots of srirrachaand salty tortilla chips, followed by several pieces of chocolate and a warm beer.

What is your dream location to cruise? Honestly, my back yard. The Great Lakes are amazing, and I am proud of them.

What’s been the funniest moment onboard?

If you could give one piece of advice to newbie cruisers, what would it be?  The less things you have, the less things you have to break. Don’t be scared of sharks, there are more sharks on land than there are in the sea. Make mistakes – they are the greatest part of your story. If you are the kind of person who refuses to ask for help (cough cough, calling most men) get over it – go ask for help. If you are the kind of person that has a hard time parting with all of your things (calling most women) get over it – leave it behind, it’s probably unnecessary. Oh and crying is allowed.

 

I NOMINATE the LIEBSTER AWARD to the following:

KEVIN DE REGT  thederegtory.wordpress.com – Hillarious writer. Single handed 25 year old doing America’s Great Loop before heading back to Dartmouth for his masters. Buy this kid a drink and feed him a hot meal if you meet him on his travels okay?

DAVID ADOLPHS tusitalasailing.com – An friend who made his dreams reality, and has sailed to the other side of the world. So happy for him.

AMY & MARY lakemichiganinadugout.blogspot.com/p/expedition.html– two bad ass chicks who hand made a canoe and sailed the perimeter of Lake Michigan –  I KNOW, AND YOU THOUGHT WE WERE CRAZY. http://vimeo.com/57895612 AMAZING.

 

If you weren’t on this adventure, what would you be doing?

What question do you hate answering the most?

What question do you wish more people thought to ask?

What was the dirtiest job you have been faced with?

What did you bring on your trip that you later realized was ridiculous?

Describe a moment when you wanted to quit.

Whose boat do you secretly wish you could hop on to travel with and why?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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CAPTAIN KATIE

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Can we please have a round of applause for our new captain,  who is not only a deep sea fisher woman but has just completed her US COAST GUARD MASTERS CAPTAIN LICENSE ! ! ! The most common question we got traveling aboard was “Who is the captain?” In which we laughed and said both of us. Truth is that yes, I was the one driving most of the time, but when it came to decision making, problem solving, navigating, statistics, logistics, and pretty much everything required to get from A to B, Katie ran the show. The captain of a ship is not just the person at the helm, it is so much more than that – Captain Katie everyone ⚓ hire her today, or at least buy the woman a drink. Proud of ya MA.

Back in the day… before either of us knew a damn thing about captaining or plumbing… and our toilet was broken… we figured it would be a better captains chair than a toilet anyways.

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