Monday, July 13, 2009

Life on a boat

(L to R - My Dad, sister Kathy, Alicia and Kris - I'm in the back hiding)
Yes, I used to live on a sailboat with my family. Long story short.....
When I was 14, my Dad decided that our family would enjoy sailing around the world on a sailboat. Of course, us kids thought that was a splendid idea also! No school; just playing all day in the sun, sand and waves. My mom was agreeable too so we sold our home. During Christmas break of 9th grade, we drove to Florida and rented a little cottage in Punta Gorda. Us kids had to go back to school.

(The Pitons on the Island of St. Lucia)

A few months later we found a 40-foot sailboat named Carina and moved on board. We spent half a year learning to sail and then left Venice, FL (we missed 1/2 a year of school during this portion) to start our trip around the world. We sailed to Key West, the Bahamas and then dropped down into the U.S. Virgin Islands where we had to get back into school. I was in the 10th grade by then. After finishing out the year, we spent the following summer sailing down through the rest of the Caribbean islands and then back up to St. Thomas for the start of my Junior year.
(Carina anchored in Gustavus Harbor on the island of St. Christopher)

During the next Christmas break we left and headed across the Gulf of Mexico to the Panama Canal, through the canal and up the west coast of Central America and Mexico to San Diego, CA where we stopped again and went back to school. My older sister, Kathy, decided not to continue the trip with us and stayed behind in St. Thomas. She lived there for 20 years before moving back to AK.
(Kris, Alicia and me holding the parrot)
(L to R, Kathy, Kris, Mom, me and Alicia)

By now we had decided we weren't going to go around the world, but would instead sail back up to Alaska. We left San Diego after only a few months and then settled again in Friday Harbor, WA. We finished the school year and then spent the summer sailing up the west coast of Canada and through the Inside Passage to Alaska. We sold our boat, got an apartment and I attended my senior year of high school back home in Alaska.
I have written a book (it has only taken about 15 years!) about our time on Carina. It is finished and sitting at my publishers waiting to be printed. I hope to have it out this year, but who knows. The publisher is a small Alaskan company that requires me to pay 1/2 the printing costs.....I haven't come up with the money yet. But I will. Soon. Maybe.

In the meantime, feast your eyes on these pics of warmer weather, ocean breezes, sandy beaches, and exotic island scenery.


Lisa at Greenbow said...

What an enriching time of life. I have read about people doing this and you got to live it. Sounds like fun to me.

Cathy said...

I can hardly wait to read the book! My life was so "normal" growing up compared to yours.....I assume you wrote about how it felt to live such an interesting life outside the mainstream as a teenager.

Aunt Krissy said...

Did Mom feed me back then? I was sure skinny. Made up for it now.

Kellie said...

I love hearing sailboat stories from Kris. Can't wait to read your book.

crochet lady said...

Your parents gave you a great gift in that experience. I'm sure people would be very interested in reading about it, I know I would!

janice said...

The photo's are wonderful. I have heard bits and pieces of the story but never the entire saga. So.... I want a signed first edition!

Margaret Ann said...

Geesch Patty!!!!!!! Unbelieveable!

A Free Spirit Butterfly said...

What an incredible story. It truly sounds like a movie! Wonder who would play you?

Love ya