Here are answers to some of the most common questions I receive.
1.) This is my dream too, where do I start if I want to do the same?
Take some sailing classes, head to your local harbor or yacht club and see if there is a casual weekly racing series open to newcomers. I recommend reading books by other cruisers to get an idea what the lifestyle is like, the challenges, and possible tips. Volunteer to work with your local marine specialists: a marine mechanic, a rigger, a sailmaker, a plumber, electrician. You’ll need to know the foundation of all of these skills aboard your floating home. Join a cruising boat looking for crew. Cruising boats are often looking for crew and other good people to join their crew. Make sure you bring humility, a positive attitude, and a readiness to work hard. This lifestyle is super fun and full of adventures but it takes a ton of hard work!
2.) I have a dream and plenty of passion, but I don’t have enough money to make it happen. How do you afford it/fund yourself?
From my experience, if you believe in your dreams deeply enough, make choices out of love instead of fear, and do all you can to keep moving towards them, the needed funds will come. There is always a way, although sometimes we are so focused on it happening one way that we hardly notice when all the signs are pointing to another option. Stay open and flexible and utilize your strengths and passions as your assets. It’s always hard to make the leap between the financial security of a steady job, but if there is something that your soul is burning to do, there’s nothing more important than taking action. It will be scary and likely difficult at first but this is what opens you up to the small miracles, suddenly opening doors, the coincidences, and kindness of strangers that leads you to developing a personal relationship to the unknown. I never knew that following my dreams would lead me to spirituality, but doing so takes a leap of faith, and leads to something more important than the dream itself—an understanding of your place and purpose in the Universe. Keeping my dream afloat financially has been a constant struggle, but has led me to meet innumerable interesting, generous, and amazing humans. Looking back, I think there is something wonderful about traveling on a budget because it makes you connect with people, all of whom just might have something special to teach or offer you. In today’s word, there are more opportunities than ever to live outside the box. You just have to know what you want and you have to be willing to make sacrifices for it. Authenticity and the bravery to choose your dreams over your fears will always lead you to abundance!
3.) Can I join you?
At this stage in my voyage, I’m not looking for extra crew. But please check out these awesome resources to get linked up with a cruising boat looking for crew!
Offshore Passage Opportunities
Crewseekers Current Sailing Opportunities
4.) How did you train Tropicat to follow you around?
Tropicat was a special cat, but all animals are special. I think we just have to take the time to understand their needs. Tropicat was a high-energy, super intelligent animal that didn’t necessarily love living on a boat. She wanted to climb trees and hunt and play. She needed a lot of attention and interaction or she got bored. There were several steps in getting her to follow me while we’re on land: first was gaining her deep trust. After six months together, she understood that I had her best interest in mind and she was always safe near me. Second, start young. She was not yet a year old when we started taking ‘walks’. Third, ease into it. I slowly introduced her to the idea by taking her to wild places free of dogs, roads, loud noises, and many other people. Little by little once she understood that she would be safe in the places I brought her, I tried a little more diversity. Fourth, be patient. You’ll need to stay near and not get too far ahead. Cats don’t walk like dogs. And even Amelia didn’t always come when called. The best trick was to stop calling them and sit down and be still. This made her super curious and want to come investigate what I was doing. And also gave me time to meditate. ;)
5.) Is it hard to eat a plant-based diet while living on a boat?
Eating a plant-based diet often takes a little more time and creativity, but it’s more than worth the extra effort to feel so good, stop supporting animal abuse, and live lighter on the planet! For the most part I’ve found it helps me meet people in new places, because I’m always going ashore and asking to be pointed towards someone growing organic food. This generally leads to a fun adventure full of interesting, like-minded people! And every now and then, when I’m in a place with plentiful, low-on the food chain fish, I do eat fish. Especially those caught by people who I know respect their kill. It’s amazing how much more I appreciate it when it’s not all the time.
6.) I’m afraid to travel alone, how do you do it?
I firmly believe that traveling alone is a fantastic avenue to self-discovery and gaining confidence. Yes, it seems scary to be alone or go somewhere alone when you aren’t used to it, but like most things, they seem scarier than they are when you are actually doing it. Traveling alone gave me a chance to learn who I really am, and try on different versions of myself. And now, whenever I’m alone, it forces me to check back in with my true self and make sure I’m where I want to be physically, emotionally, and spiritually. It forces me to look at my social patterns, meet new people, and gain new perspectives. It makes me talk to people I might not have talked to if I was with a friend or companion. It helps me observe the world around me instead of being caught up with the dynamic of another person. I love traveling alone because I’m free to do whatever suits me, change my mind, and take my time. These are wonderful luxuries we don’t always have in life, so I believe a solo trip is a very healthy endeavor!