Jackie Parry – author


2 Comments

Travelling The World Traumas

Excerpt from This Is It – 2 hemispheres, 1 people, and 1 boat

Intro: As we made way for La Paz, Mexico on our sailboat Pyewacket, throughout the last night before landfall we towed a sailboat (Windsong) that required assistance…

With immense relief, dawn tinted the sky a light blue, and at a critical moment in the clutches of gusting wind and the narrowest part of the canal, the tow line parted. Engulfed with fatigue, the nervous energy galvanised me into action.

The dawn turned grey as if angry with the fracas beneath it. The unforgiving currents picked up Windsong and guided them, side on, to the quintessence of jagged rocks. Meanwhile, opposing winds lifted the flowing currents, turning a placid passageway into an angry, frothing nightmare.

Before the fracas it was lovely and calm

Before the fracas it was lovely and calm

With no time for a text book tow, we leaped into action.

‘I’ll tie a fender to the end of this line,’ I yelled into the whipping wind, while putting my knot training to good use. ‘We can drag the line off our stern to see if they can pick it up with their boat hook’

‘Good work,’ Noel agreed, while concentrating on the safety of our own vessel.

With winds strong enough to lift and twist our boats sideways and the solid, bumpy waves bashing against the hull, we had to manoeuvre far enough away from Windsong for safety, but drive close enough so they could pick up the line.

Fenders float; therefore, it kept the line on the surface of the water. When boats’ propellers rotate, they can easily suck lines in and around the propeller shaft, stalling the engine and potentially causing expensive damage. Many possibilities and dangers existed and had to be considered and accounted for.

We couldn't enjoy the typical Mexican views

We couldn’t enjoy the typical Mexican views

‘I’ll come around again,’ Noel called out while the wind viciously whipped away his words. ‘Haul in the line for a minute.’

‘Okay,’ I yelled back, and Pyewacket bumped and heaved in a circle, while I prepared the line to sweep it past their bow once again.

We watched the crew of Windsong valiantly try and fail to retrieve their life-line as we swept by their bow, time after time. Their taut faces matched those of an athlete, poised for the starter’s gun. On board Pyewacket, our concerns for our own safety deepened; the engine strained against its mounts as we asked for the almost impossible. As Windsong slid closer to the awaiting rocks, we had no choice but to keep our distance. We couldn’t risk our boat and us.

We stood by helplessly, watching a fine boat surely become dashed on unforgiving boulders.

Did we all make it safely into this spectacular anchorage area?

Did we all make it safely into this spectacular anchorage area?

 

Noel and I were safe and enjoyed the safety of land!

Noel and I were safe and enjoyed the safety of land!

For more great pictures and stories look here

Our current boat is a 1920s Dutch Barge – would you like to look around (she’s for sale!) – look here

Author blog: www.jackieparry.com

Travel blog: www.noelandjackiesjourneys.com

Horse: http://helpinghandforhorses.weebly.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/jackie.parry.7543

Travels: https://www.facebook.com/NoelAndJackiesJourneys

Horses: https://www.facebook.com/pages/For-the-love-of-horses/1048526295173146

Amazon Author page: http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B00OT9CWV8

Amazon book links

A Standard Journey: viewBook.at/astandardjourney

Of Foreign Build:  viewBook.at/OfForeignBuild

Cruisers’ AA (accumulated acumen): viewBook.at/cruisersaa

This Is It: viewBook.at/thisisit

Audio Excerpt Of Foreign Build: http://goo.gl/AnsKRr

Twitter

https://twitter.com/NandJJourneys

https://twitter.com/StandardJourney

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7157763.Jackie_Sarah_Parry?from_search=true

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/jackieparry7543

Linkedin https://uk.linkedin.com/in/jackieparry

Google Plus: https://plus.google.com/u/0/113148478675680852619/posts/p/pub

Photo album of A Standard Journey: http://goo.gl/1QgMp2

Photo album of Of Foreign Build: https://jackieparry.com/of-foreign-build-photo-album/

Photo album of Cruisers’AA: https://jackieparry.com/pics/

Photo album of This Is It: https://jackieparry.com/photos-this-is-it/

A Standard Journey FB Page: https://goo.gl/uV7NGY

Cruisers’ AA FB Page:  https://goo.gl/2vEnkB

Of Foreign Build FB Page: https://goo.gl/VvLT3M

Listen to me chat to Carol Graham (Never Ever Give Up) about sailing, pirates, adopting horses, and surviving life! http://app.stitcher.com/splayer/f/69073/41215218

Advertisements


Leave a comment

Bestseller BOOK SALE – $2.99 TODAY ONLY

Starting now (9am UTC) – for 24 hours you can purchase the electronic version of Of Foreign Build for just $2.99!

CLICK HERE to purchase

Hurry – it goes up to its usual price of $3.99 tomorrow!

All 5 star reviews : “I couldn’t out it down”    “Buy this book”

PIRATES! STORMS! MAN-EATING CROCS! MUGGERS! WORKING IN A BROTHEL! SINKING! A NEAR ABDUCTION IN FRANCE! AND A WOMAN FINDING HER PLACE IN THE WORLD – PLUS MUCH MORE ……

I usually made bread during my nightshift on watch - about 3 am.

I usually made bread during my nightshift on watch – about 3 am.


13 Comments

Top 20 Cruising Realities No-One Talks about!

I didn’t talk to my husband for two days when his peculiar answers to my naïve nautical questions reached my bewildered ears. Back then, as a mere fledgling to sailing, my raw researching met brutal honesty. Seeking a sailboat and home, to travel the planet, I tried to grasp the financials and what, exactly, was I letting myself in for.

“How much does it cost to buy and then maintain a boat?” Coming from the corporate world I was gearing up to write in-depth project and budget plans, but abruptly shook those thoughts from my organised head when Noel replied.

“It’ll take every penny we have.”

“Oh right, well, what’s so great about sailing?” Expecting to be assailed with vivid pictures of slicing, splendidly through clear, flat water, with handsome palm trees and white sandy beaches supplying a dreamlike backdrop, the image shattered as Noel’s ruthless reply tore through my reverie,

“Getting to port,” he said, “and the local bar”.

Seven years later and over 40,000 miles clocked, I can see the wisdom in his answers.

Getting into port is one of the best bits! Daniel's Bay, Marquesas.

Getting into port is one of the best bits! Daniel’s Bay, Marquesas.

Enduring the Escapade

Long term cruising is an incredible adventure and hard work. Arriving in a new country or town, our thoughts steer to, how do we check in? Where do we get fuel and potable water? How much is it?

The men talk amps and engines the girls talk laundry and supermarkets. Noel, Mariah and I are on our last leg in the superb south Pacific Ocean. Aside from reflecting on our magnificent voyage so far, a few ludicrous “learning’s” deserve a mention.

Cleaning cupboards reality - it is not your 'average' kitchen.

Cleaning cupboards reality – it is not your ‘average’ kitchen.

First, let’s be positive. Our escapade divorces and insulates us from the world’s day-to-day problems. We are not ashamed to bury our heads in the sand and enjoy the “ignorance is bliss” scenario, while we can. News never changes; it is sad and depressing today and tomorrow.

Frequently we meet like-minded people, of all nationalities, where age is no friendship barrier. Hooking up with similar sized boats and sharing the ocean brings the comfort of companionship and the joy in sharing the dolphins that play on our bow during those perfect sailing days.

Mostly, for us, it is the freedom of living simply. We have no letterbox where small bits of paper with large numbers intrude into our sanctuary, sucking dry the bank account to allow landlubber luxuries. And yes, there is the odd G & T (Vodka for me please) while watching spectacular sunsets, doing an anchor pirouette, savouring the sedate, shifting views as we would fine wine.

Secrets of the initiated

Over the year’s advice, hints and tips have deluged our salt saturated minds until our armpits are all but overflowing. We thought we’d heard it all, but here are some unmentionables that we learned along the way:

(1) Constipation – the most fluid of us struggle on long trips. On watch, the comfy cockpit seat will become well acquainted with your behind, causing, what we refer to as – the cork effect.

(2) Seasickness – the toughest of us will become seasick. After corkscrewing for 48 hours solid, your tummy will give up all hope of hanging onto to anything. Most of us unwillingly feed the fish at some point. It is like puberty, you just have to get through it. Despite suicidal thoughts during the worst bouts of seasickness, once you have reached your haven and spent a few days in flat water, going back out into lumpy seas suddenly becomes a good idea again. On the plus side it is a great diet!

(3) Toilet tantrums – at some point most marine toilets will block. If you have not been allocated the repair task, leave the boat while it is being fixed. Build up of pressure while trying to pump it clear will create the most spectacular explosion.  Becoming AWOL at this time will help avoid a good dose of (5).

(4) Landlubbers – your farewell from home will be tearful, exciting and filled with unfulfilled promises from friends and family, who assure you that they will keep you up to date on home happenings. After two years you will be grateful for an email once every six months from your bestest buddies, all of which think you spend your entire life sitting on the aft deck sipping G & T.

G&T on the aft deck - after this I'd need one.

G&T on the aft deck – after this I’d need one.

(5) Arguments – the closest relationship will suffer at times. Falling out with your spouse is inevitable especially when you are woken three and a half minutes before you are due on watch at 3 am. Learn to talk about it and laugh, it can get damn lonely otherwise and create a yearning for (4).

(6) Moon-fright – the moon is crafty bugger. You know it is due to rise, but as you scan the horizon there is a luminous light that assumes the shape of an approaching aircraft carrier. This will be the moon, strategically cloaked with black cloud to form heart-stopping shapes. However, the moon will become your buddy, especially if dealing with number (5).

(7) Cravings – two days out of a long haul sail you will desperately desire all those things you haven’t got.  Roast chicken, ice cream…

(8) Spiders – having abhorrence to the skittering critters my husband assured me that life on board meant no spiders. This seems reasonable, after all we are away from land a lot of the time. Reality is that I am sure we have had a hand inter breeding crawly critters from different countries, probably creating a whole new weird and wonderful breed.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

(9) Time – boat maintenance is a full time job in addition to washing, cleaning and sourcing supplies. If you are fortunate enough to momentarily catch up, items (1) or (2) – or both if you are unlucky, will fill the gaps. At the end of each day you’ll just have time to read a page or two of that book you’ve always wanted to read, before sparking out.

(10) Fishing – you will fish once per trip. After you have heaved the huge dolphin fish on board and it has thrashed itself to death, splattering blood over the clean, white cockpit and your battle weary body, the fishing gear will gather salt in the Lazorette for the rest of the journey. By the next trip, you will have forgotten the sticky mess and break out the lines.

(11) Sinking – on your watch, typically in the graveyard hours, you’ll check the bilge for the last time before the welcome warmth of bed and the bilge will be full of water.  Instantaneously you are wide-awake and have no problem in screeching at your partner who is obviously having their best ever sleep. Turning the mains off is not an option and two hours later you will find the solution to the problem is something as simple as greasing the stern gland. Finally, you’ll crawl into bed and the stampeding adrenaline will keep you awake until twenty minutes before you are due back on watch.

(12) Plip-plop – you will loose something overboard, deal with it, it is gone.

(13) Fitness – you will not become fit sailing. Although you do become trim, see (2).

(14) Turning back – face facts that the storm you can no longer punch into has beaten you.  It is not failure to turn back, it is common sense and above all the boat’s and your safety – also helps relieve item (2).

Fixing a sheared pin in an exotic place (Tahiti).

Fixing a sheared pin in an exotic place (Tahiti).

(15) On a long passage – when the fresh food has all gone (and if you are like us, without fridge) after a week tinned food will taste all the same. It will have that unmistakable metallic flavour (tinny flavouring assists number (2)).

(16) Dust – dust will collect with intensity, especially in those tiny, boat shape, awkward places. Adds to (9).

(17) Company – your partner is only ten feet away sleeping below, at that time you are single-handing. It can be lonely, maybe a good thing if dealing with (1), (2) or (5)!

(18) Plunging – on moonless nights you plunge into thick darkness, with peripheral vision coming to a shocking end at the bow. It’s best not to dwell on this too much.

(19) Meteorites – the dark nights are abundant with “shooting stars”, but watch for the big ones. Out of nowhere, a spot light will beam down on you while you sit quietly in the cockpit minding your own business. A huge, bright meteorite will give you occasion to create a few more grey hairs.

(20) Advice – some will be good and some, well, let’s just say, some will be totally fictitious. You will meet some gold medal winning “know it alls”, for example this article, is it fact or fiction? – best way is to get out there and find out for yourself.

Coming into glorious destinations, like the Bahamas, you can never sit back and relax.

Coming into glorious destinations, like the Bahamas, you can never sit back and relax.

For lots more great tips, tricks, ideas and advice on living on board, see our book Cruisers’ AA.


7 Comments

Ocean voyage on canals? – Positive thoughts

Anyone would think we were planning an ocean voyage. While we had use of a car for an extra day, we stocked up with bulky/heavy shopping for the boat. You know the kind of things, items that won’t go off in the near future.

Yesterday's shopping

Yesterday’s shopping

I re-arranged the galley, and started to wonder, ‘just how does everyone else pack their gear?’ I tend to keep sauces together, tins together, dried stuff together and potatoes and onions in a cool dark spot (they can last for weeks and weeks).

More food means more ideas and yummy dinners!

More food means more ideas and yummy dinners!

I am quite the ‘stower’ on board. On Mariah (our first boat which was a 33 ft sail boat), we’d fill the floor with bags of food, prior to an ocean crossing. Noel could never understand where I had put it all.

My positive?, the car is expensive but down the line, we will have saved our backs carrying heavy shopping, and I feel a real sense of satisfaction when we are fully ‘stocked up’.

By the by, please remember to always cut the plastic rings (the ones used on cans) – we dispose of our rubbish very carefully. Even if these rings go in a plastic bag then a rubbish bin, we still cut them - just in case . . . . they can be very harmful to wildlife.

By the by, please remember to always cut the plastic rings (the ones used on cans) – we dispose of our rubbish very carefully. Even if these rings go in a plastic bag then a rubbish bin, we still cut them – just in case . . . . they can be very harmful to wildlife.