There are many ways to tell the background story about us and our trip.
The short story is: we met, fell in love and went on a sailing trip.
To tell the longer story about us, we’ll both tell how we ended up going on this sailing trip:
I have no family members or any relatives that likes to sail, nor likes to spend time on the sea at all, so it is quite odd that I`m actually now taking the step to live on a boat sailing around exploring the world. I grew up only 500 m from a beautiful beach on the west coast of Norway, but didn`t really use the ocean for anything else than swimming during our extremely short summer periods. But here I am…taking time of work, planning to go on a longer sailing trip. Who would have thought?!
My interest in sailing began in 2013 when I joined G Adventure on a week of sailing in Croatia. In 2014 I took a sailing course for beginners in Oslo, and I crewed on a regatta boat (Enigma) every Wednesday in Stavanger for 2 seasons. During these 2 years I also sailed with Kainani Sails in Hawaii, I sailed Blue Cup in Greece and I sailed with SeilNorge along the coast of Norway from Brønnøysund to Bodø.
In 2015 I met Andreas, and lucky for me, he was a sailor and he was planning to go on a long sailing trip in the nearest future. The last couple of years I had dreamt about doing something really adventurous, and when Andreas told me about his plans, I couldn`t resist asking to come along!
I have never sailed in open oceans, I have never sailed in waves bigger than 1 m, I´m afraid of the dark blue ocean and what´s underneath it, I´m afraid of sharks, I get seasick, I don`t know how to fish nor prepare fish for eating, I don´t know anything about motors, electrical components etc. Before taking the final decision about going sailing a number of thoughts like that and several questions were strolling my head: Will I get board? What do we do every day? Will I manage to live on a small boat with no privacy? How will I react if we hit a storm or if something bad happens with the boat? What if we get seriously ill?
Hopefully will all these worries disappear as the wind takes us to beautiful places, we meet interesting people and the sailing skills grow. I´m looking forward to explore!
When I decided that I wanted to sail around the World, it became apparent that I had three challenges:
- I didn’t have a boat
- I didn’t know how to sail
- I was twelve years old
I spent the next 14 years working to get closer to my goal. In 2002 I cast off on SY Furore (a Bavaria 40 Ocean) from Koper in Slovenia, with the intention of circumnavigating. I bought the boat, but didn’t have any idea of how to sail, so I had to learn everything the hard way. I learned how to hoist the sails by spying on other boats through binoculars. Through trial and error (mostly error), I managed to hoist my own sails, but then got terrified when the wind hit the sails and the boat heeled over. I decided it was heeling over way too much, so I took the sails back down, to figure out what was wrong. Only after my brother assured me that everything was normal and nothing was going wrong did I actually hoist the sails again and to my amazement the boat moved and even went in the direction I steered (at least most of the time). I made the classic mistake of spending almost my entire budget on the boat, so I sailed solo in the Mediterranean for a year, learning how to sail, before I was completely out of money. I brought Furore back to Norway, where I sold her.
It took me another 6 years, a stint in the Navy and 3 years in China before I had enough capital to buy a new boat. In the summer of 2008 I bought SY African Innovation (an AfricanCats FastCat 435) in Illmuijden in the Netherlands. I sailed her back to Norway, intending to spend 2 years, saving up money and preparing the boat for a circumnavigation. Like the first time, I had spent too much money on the boat, so I needed to save up money before I could cast off. When fall came and the temperature dropped it became miserable to live on a catamaran in Norway, so I decided to cast off and try my luck. 2,5 years later I made landfall in Sydney, Australia, with a ton of fantastic memories and new friends, but once again I was dead broke, so I sold AI there and returned to Norway dead set to try again. I now returned to school and got my merchant marine papers. I worked as an AB (Ablebodied seaman) for Hurtigruta, a cadet for Fjord 1 and finally a 2nd and 1st officer for Knutsen OAS.
The itch to set sail again kicked in. I had a loose plan of casting off on a new circumnavigation in 2017, but no realistic plan of how to accomplishing it, without selling everything I owned, yet again, to buy a boat. Ask anyone who has owned a boat and they will tell you it’s not something you make money on and after selling everything twice and ending both trips dead broke, I made some changes to my plan. I bought a 1/3 share in SY Baluba (an Ovni 435) and explored the westcoast of Norway. It was a great experience and I really fell in love with the Ovni brand. The only challenge was that I dreamed of sailing around the World and with two other owners it’s difficult to take a boat we all own together on my circumnavigation.
It was at this time I met Margrethe and she wholeheartedly bought into the circumnavigation dream, but she wanted one change: for us to leave a year earlier. I’m not one to let an excellent chance pass me by, so I jumped at it. I sold my share in Baluba and scoured the market for a new Ovni. We found one for sale on Trinidad by a fellow Norwegian. After flying to Trinidad and going through the boat with a surveyor, we were happy and became the proud new owners of Stella Polaris (an Ovni 445).
The horizon calls again and this time I’m casting off together with a partner in crime. I can’t wait to get out there and explore the World again, hopefully this time I can avoid ending the trip dead broke … I’ve got a good feeling about it, because Margrethe is an accountant 🙂