Going to a travel influencer’s (we used to be bloggers) conference is like traveling to a designated spot in the world where you can meet your tribe; your people. Finally — you’re among people like you who understand that exploring the world completely fills you. And so does the act of writing about your travels.
So, is it any surprise that I met Renae Lindsay, sitting at a shared breakfast round in a hotel ballroom, eating breakfast during the Opening speaker’s keynote speech? We were instructed to introduce ourselves to our tablemates and make connections. That’s when I met Renae, who held up the travel memoir she’d just written: Adventure: Sailing Around the World in Other People’s Boats.
Renae was suddenly my hero. I wanted to read all about it and think about it as a possible dream-turned-reality for me, too. She graciously gave me a copy and I began reading of her adventures to France, Greece, the Caribbean, Tahiti, the Solomon Islands, Panama Canal, etc. whenever I had free time in Quebec City, Canada — where we both were at the moment. Because we could have been anywhere in the world, but we were both here, and our paths crossed.
Which is what travel is all about.
Travel is about the adventure of new, unexpected experiences. You can be surprised by discovering that places are not what you hoped. Or that you’d pictured life in a place so differently from the reality. Or you visit a place that you had never even heard of before, and were thrilled to explore. Another foray into a spot in the world. And how exciting to think of it while sailing around the world.
But Renae’s book showed me that sailing on other people’s boats — going with the flow and letting things happen, doing hard work, putting up with strangers out in the middle of the sea, testing their temperaments, having to share s small space on a drifting dot on the globe, trusting and relying on things working out, your own resources, your patience, and your instincts — is not for me.
I loved reading about all the skippers Renae met as she sailed for 18-months on other peoples’ boats. She met so many different characters with such different personalities, and various crew members who were doing what she was doing. Sometimes they hit it off. Sometimes not. But it was always an adventure.
She went to various islands all over the world and explored every inch while docked. She hiked, went to local markets, worked on the boat, took tours and dined at restaurants on every island. She was sight-seeing as I’d want to. It was her purpose in taking the trip, along with learning more about sailing as she went.
Through her, I realized I would not want to do that. I don’t want to be a crew member and do so much hard work on my journeys. At least, not as much as she did. It’s a completely different lifestyle, and after reading her book, I knew it was not the lifestyle for me.
BUT — it was an inspirational book in that it inspired me to travel to places I’d never considered before. Her descriptions of Panama, New Zealand, Easter Island and the Solomon Islands had me pulling out my globe with wanderlust. I have made notes on many of the places she described.
If you’ve ever thought of sailing the world, or just love armchair travel and an inside look at a world most of us never enter, you’ll love reading Renae’s book.
But, I — I got to do more than that. I got to meet her and talk to her over breakfast in Quebec, and I wouldn’t be surprised to find our paths cross again somewhere in the world.
How does sailing the world in other people’s boats sound to you?
It’s always such a delight to meet other travelers and listen to their adventures. You wrote: “Travel is about the adventure of new, unexpected experiences.” I so agree, and it’s how I wish to live my life, so it’s nice to have fellow travelers showing how to do so.
Thanks! That’s how I feel every time I travel or hear about someone else’s travels. So much to see and do! And experience.
Ugh. It’s many a year since I set foot on a boat despite living on an island 🙂 As ever, I much prefer to follow vicariously.
This is a great adventure to take part in vicariously. I’m with you on this one, Roy. I’ll stay ashore for this armchair travel tale.
I used to sail with a group of girls when I was a teenager and realized quickly how much work is involved! However, it is a fantastic way to see the world and I could see myself traveling the world for a year or so in this fashion. WITs is an amazing conference and although I did not attend this year, I have attended a couple (and even spoke at one) and met great friends! I’m a bookworm so I will have to pick up that book!
Oh my gosh. You’ll love this book because you’ll have that insider’s sailing knowledge. I’d love to hear what you think if you read it.
Are you down with OPB, how can I explain it, let’s take it frame by frame it. You know it’s a good book when it sounds absolutely cool and you can read it, and decide that it’s not the adventure for you. It means that it’s honest, and truthful. Not all extreme adventures are good ideas or for all people, but it still can be a fantastic story to live vicariously through. I am all for OPB, ya you know me. Jenn, on the other hand, isn’t a fish fan. Kind of so long and thanks for all the fish going on, with tongue planted firmly in cheek.
It is definitely real and honest. Renae shares the good and bad, the humdrum, the waiting, and the personality clashes. It’s all there.
My first sailing trip was actually in Seattle and I fell in love with it completely. I will definitely read her book as I can see how irritating it could be sailing with people that you may not particularly get along with in such a small space. I definitely would love to travel the world how she did though cannot wait to read her book.
I think you’ll love it. Especially since you sailed, yourself.
Oh, this sounds like a great story and book! I’ve never really been sailing so I’d love to try it and feel like it would be a great way to travel the world. I’ll have to check out this book!
That’s how I felt, too, Ashley, until I read her book. I’d be eager to hear what you think after you read it.
Sailing in other people’s boats – that is such a creative way to see the world! I bet she has met some interesting souls and had very unique stories to tell. But, I agreed with you that it is not a lifestyle for me – at least not go sailing for 18 months and working for other people. Maybe just one time for the experience, but I prefer to stay on the ground.
Like any good sailor, she’s got plenty of stories to tell!
Meeting new people is one of my absolute favorite parts of travel — and I’m glad you met Renae, and shared her with us 🙂 . I’d LOVE to read her book — I’ve already clicked through to Amazon and read the intro. It looks to be quite a story! I can already say that NO — I would not want to do this. But to experience it vicariously through Renae’s telling, oh, yes!
Very easy to read. Renae is a great storyteller.