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Saturday, May 25, 2024
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HomeCruiseBeyond Sun and Books: The Active & Creative World of Cruising Life

Beyond Sun and Books: The Active & Creative World of Cruising Life

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Mocka Jumbies and Rum...

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“Don’t you get bored on your boat just lying in the sun and reading books all day?” That’s a question we often hear and it nicely shows the stereotypical perception landlubbers have of cruising life. On the contrary: the days are usually not long enough to fit everything we want to do on top of all we have to do aboard our floating home! So if you’re contemplating going cruising, but worried that it might be a boring lifestyle, this article should convince you otherwise…

In a nice anchorage with clear water the list of fun activities is endless: We’re happy to spend as much time as possible in the water snorkeling with fishy friends and exploring underwater. Scuba-diving, kayaking, SUP paddling, kitesurfing, windsurfing—there’s certainly something for you to do as well, depending on how sporty you are! Ashore yet another array of activities is beckoning: from leisurely beach walks via hiking or cycling to rock-climbing—with or without additional equipment there’s something fun to be done in most places.

A cruising boat is only a happy boat if it gets regular maintenance, so there’s basically always a long to-do list (best displayed in a prominent spot on a bright yellow post-it) to fend off boredom: engine, outboard, watermaker, sails—the possibilities (and need) to check, change, repair or improve is never-ending! On top of necessary tasks there are (at least on our boat) cosmetic issues that are usually far down on the to-do list waiting to be addressed in an hour of potential leisure: polishing stainless steel parts (on dry days outside) or wooden furniture (inside on rainy days) or cleaning the waterline (on hot days) and a dozen other little tasks.

Roxy painting. Photo By Birgit Hackl and Christian Feldbauer
Roxy painting. Photo By Birgit Hackl and Christian Feldbauer

Sailing with Charlie: World cruisers are everywhere these days

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Apart from these obvious activities, many cruisers specialize in creative skills: writing, blogging or vlogging only requires a laptop and a camera and with better internet connections it’s getting easier and easier to work online and upload even large files. Crocheting or knitting equipment is even less bulky and a sewing machine that’s primarily aboard to repair canvas can of course be used for more delicate projects as well. Language skills are always useful when traveling and there’s a whole array of online courses and apps available that make it easy to acquire a new language. Even if you can only communicate with basic vocabulary peppered with mistakes, don’t worry and just try: the locals will appreciate your efforts and you’ll find it easier to make friends and get insights into the culture of the place you’re visiting. Do you play an instrument or have you always wanted to do so and never found the time? Just bring it along–unless it’s a piano, then you might have to settle for an electric version. We have met many boats with guitars and ukuleles, but also a trumpet and even an accordion underway. Other hobbies require more equipment or a whole workshop, but can still fit aboard a tiny, floating home!

SY Liward carries microphones, an amplifier and loudspeakers along, so Steve can get cruisers and local musicians together for jam sessions to “Rock the dock” or “Rock the boat” wherever Steve and Lili go! 

Our friend Sue used to make artful prints of people, animals and landscapes they encountered while traveling the world aboard their Halberg Rassy 43 SY Spruce. Now they have settled down and Sue gets to work on a much bigger scale. You can follow Spruce Ohlson on FB to see more of her art!

Me with my jewelry workshop. Photo By Birgit Hackl and Christian Feldbauer
Me with my jewelry workshop. Photo By Birgit Hackl and Christian Feldbauer

The Singing Sailor And Other Sad Tales of My Eternal Ineptitude

The cruising lifestyle gave Roxy the opportunity to achieve a childhood goal of being a serious watercolor artist. She paints large landscapes en plein air from Sky Pond’s cockpit, dinghy or bow, exposed to the elements while capturing the light and atmosphere. https://www.instagram.com/roxypodlogar/

Whenever I’m in the mood to play with shiny things instead of mere words, Pitufa’s large salon table fills up with my Dremel drillpress and a whole array of accessories and tools to make necklaces, bracelets and earrings with black pearls. https://www.pitufa.at/pearls_august_23/

My partner Christian’s a geek and always loved programming. Three years ago he designed and built a multiplexer/navdata-gateway and over the time it turned into a fully-fledged product. Most days all he needs to work on his “Pitufino” www.pitufino.com is a laptop, but sometimes he puts up a complete electronic lab in Pitufa’s salon.

No matter how big your boat is or where your skills and interests lie, there’s bound to be a way to adjust your favorite pastime to your cruising lifestyle!

Saturday Concert Oponuhu. Photo By Birgit Hackl and Christian Feldbauer
Saturday Concert Oponuhu. Photo By Birgit Hackl and Christian Feldbauer

Anchored to Reality—Well, Sort Of!

Birgit and Christian have been sailing, playing, working and tinkering all-year-round for 12 years aboard their SY Pitufa. Check out their blog www.pitufa.at for more info or order their books on Amazon: “Sailing Towards the Horizon” is a travelbook about their adventures, “On Velvet Paws Towards the Horizon” is an homage to their ship’s cat and “Cruising Know-How” is a compilation of articles.

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Birgit Hackl
Birgit Hacklhttp://www.pitufa.at
Birgit Hackl, Christian Feldbauer and ship’s cat Leeloo have been exploring the world on their yacht Pitufa since 2011. Visit their blog: www.pitufa.at
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