In January 2017 my husband Eric Sponberg and I departed St. Augustine, FL, on our 35-foot sailboat Corroboree with the goal of sailing around the world. I have no idea whether we will make it. As with any journey, the path is never as straight as you optimistically plan. But you go anyway, in hopes of a great adventure and because you can’t ignore the tug in your heart that beckons you on.
This blog will be the story of our voyage…and much more.
Where in the World?
According to various surveys, Americans, and young Americans in particular, are woefully ignorant about geography. You’ve heard the scandalous stories: the college grads who can’t name their state capital or point to their state when shown a USA map; the adults who think New Mexico is part of Mexico and that Rhode Island abuts New
Towed to Tahiti–The Incredible Kindness of Strangers
One of my first blog entries when we started this voyage in January 2017 was titled “The Kindness of Strangers.” It described the outpouring of help we received from both friends and strangers in making repairs to Corroboree after a hard shakedown cruise from St. Augustine to Miami. In the eighteen months since, we have
The Real Tahiti
Approaching Tahiti You know those romantic images of Tahiti we all have in our head? A hand-in-hand couple strolling on a sugar-sand beach, turquoise water lapping at their feet and palm trees swaying overhead. Lissome, long-haired maidens in native dress, performing a seductive dance. A tattooed chief blowing reverently on a conch shell, backgrounded by
How to Get Your Very Own Black Pearl
There are several ways you could become the owner of a fabulous black pearl. The most straightforward, of course, is to go to a jewelry store near you and buy one or more, set in a lustrous necklace of perfectly shaped globes or a pair of elegant earrings. A more expensive but surely more thrilling
In the Marquesas
“The Marquesas! What strange visions of outlandish things does the very name spirit up! Naked houris—cannibal banquets—groves of cocoanut—coral reefs—tattooed chiefs—and bamboo temples; sunny valleys planted with bread-fruit trees—carved canoes dancing on the flashing blue waters—savage woodlands guarded by horrible idols—HEATHENISH RITES AND HUMAN SACRIFICES.” – From a novel dated 1846 As you can imagine,
A Whole Lotta Blue
On Thursday, 29 March 2018, we left Panama to sail across the Pacific Ocean to the Marquesas Islands in French Polynesia, a journey of roughly 4,000 miles requiring 5-6 weeks at sea. On crossing the equator on 4 April, we posted our position on MapShare to update family and friends on our progress. Our good
A Leap of Faith
Part I – The Canal I wish I could say our Panama Canal transit was brilliant and went without incident, but unfortunately it was not. We left Shelter Bay Marina at 1200 on Saturday afternoon, 24 March, and motored out to a staging area outside Colon, known as The Flats. Our crew consisted of Eric,
The Road to Machu Picchu
You know that iconic photograph of Machu Picchu, the one that makes you feel like an Andean condor soaring over a lost civilization, a magical kingdom so high in the mountains, so isolated, it seems incredible that humans could ever have lived there at all? It steals your breath away and makes you yearn to
Blowin’ in the Wind
When describing a windy passage to family, friends or fellow cruisers, Eric is prone to announce, “It was blowing like stink!” Sometimes, he’s exaggerating. “It was not. It was barely 20 knots,” I’ll correct. I think he just likes using the word “stink.” I myself don’t consider it to be blowing like stink until we
In the Jungle, the Mighty Jungle
I found a sloth! I found a sloth! We knew they were here. Our marina in Panama, called Shelter Bay, sits on the edge of a 14,000-acre swathe of jungle called the San Lorenzo National Park. The dense green tangle is home to exotic birds, capuchin and howler monkeys, sloths, jaguars, ocelots, boas, crocodiles, coatimundis