Wednesday, June 09, 2010

The nature of a junkie spirit...

Some of you, dear readers, might have stumbled across our ‘philosophy’ page. If so it would be clear that this whole page is a stolen piece of inspired writing from our spiritual guru, the late Sterling Hayden. If you’ve never heard of Sterling or had a chance to read “Wanderer”- his masterpiece account of escaping the harsh reality (or surreality, rather) of Hollywood by setting sail towards Tahiti, never to return to the fame and fortunes of the movie industry - you should put your next paycheck towards it!

In addition to being a brilliant piece of literary achievement its philosophical message is profound. His realizations are the thoughts with which all wanderers are tortured - what lies beyond the horizon? Or, in most cases – what’s stopping me from finding out?

On the Nuthin Wong it is far from everyday we can afford ourselves the luxury of sitting back to ponder our own spiritual reasons for voyaging the way we do. That is why emails like one we received the other day encourage us to keep on moving in spite of obstacles and rainy days. The following text is an extract from that email.

Dear Clive,
I read the press article about you in the Ouest-France this
morning, Tuesday, June 1st, 2010. I’ve been happy to see about
your adventure after having observed your incredible boat for
a long time on the harbour of Honfleur for soon 2 weeks... I
am not of the same generation as you but I also prepare a big
trip around the world with my future boat and my family, plan
which I prepare since the age of 10. Since then, I made my
life and I had children who 2 of them are adults today. Then the
time of departure approaches. Experiments as yours are a stone
furthermore in my knowledge to refine and achieve an adventure
on the sea. I thank you for it... Thank you still for your
experience and your mind which shows that this world isn’t
devolved to violence as we can see continuously in news. That
freedom has another place there.

Yes, dear friends, freedom does have another place here. But ironically freedom does not come for free and it does not come easy, not in Sterling’s swingin’ 50’s, and perhaps even less today.

A book, anyone?

So we escaped Honfleur, the saddest of departures yet. Two weeks on the wall meant many beautiful encounters with people from near and far. But we don't usually even shop in the same supermarket twice, so getting familiar with the lunch hours of the local laundromat meant that departure was overdue, the horizon calling.

Annual boat blessing festival, Honfleur.

We had a couple of days on anchor outside lovely St Vaast before entering one of our biggest ports so far, Cherbourg, where we met up with John and Faye from New Zealand. Cherbourg is a busy international port with four ferries from the U.K each day (don’t mind the wash guys, we’ll just make a habit of tying down the porcelain on a regular basis!). With 40 000 people calling Cherbourg home it offers an opportunity to stock up on a few essentials to prepare us for a very exciting leg of the journey. Tomorrow morning the anchor comes up again and the course is plotted to the Channel Islands! The island group just south of the English Channel is affiliated with the U.K but not officially part of neither Britain, nor Fran ce. It will be our furthest stray from shore so far – 40 miles west. Thank you for your supportive comments, keep them coming!

Nuthin Wong

View from galley during festival - farewell privacy...

Yann-Olivier is a nice journalist for Ouest-France and a fan of the Wong

Hanna demands that evidence of hard work is made public (note the absence of smoke brakes under Captain Clive's command...)

Good morning horizon!


  1. We enjoyed talking with you in Honfluer. I finished your book, enjoyed it very much and passed it on to my partner.
    Happy sailing.

  2. We enjoyed seeing you in Honfluer. I finished your book and enjoyed it very much.
    Happy sailing...

  3. Hi Victoria,
    glad to hear you enjoyed the book! We're sad to have left Honfleur - it was a very special stop.

    Take care and follow the blog - let us know if you want to join down the line :)


  4. Anonymous11:14 PM

    Hi Clive
    You guys are living life to the fullest. GYC is not the same without you and Gorgeos Hannah around. What you doing dragging a nice girl like that to the Moulin Rouge? (Just kidding :)
    I have finally managed to get Emanon Launched this week. It is great to have her on the water.
    How are your plans currently? When do you think you will be crossing the Atlantic? If you are planning to do it this year you need to think about getting in position for the Trade winds... but dont cross too soon or you will hit the hurricane season.

    Best regards
    Can you tell who it is yet?