The Voyager’s Handbook

ImageAfter dinner I like reading Jimmy Cornell’s cruising bibles which a dear friend gave to us at the beginning of our journey. Last night I cheated and had a read of The Voyager’s Handbook instead. I couldn’t have put our quest any better than Beth Leonard, the author, who has opted for two extended cruising voyages over a partnership in her former management consulting firm.


Ocean cruising and world voyaging have a way of changing a person, or a couple, in ways that never occur ashore. Once you have sailed across an ocean, watching the moon move through a whole cycle and meeting the great sea mammals on their own turf, you never see our home planet and our little place in it quite the same way again….

Whether you go for three years or thirty, voyaging frees you by offering an alternative. Your newly acquired skills let you make choices about how you want to live your life. Your increased sense of responsibility allows you to deal with our choices realistically. Your newfound simplicity frees you from the misconception that material goods make you feel productive or fulfilled. Your view of yourself and your place in the world radically alters, and you tread more lightly, think more deeply, and breathe more easily.

A voyage of self-discovery. Voyaging is not just about physical travel. As you voyage, you move deeper and deeper into your own heart and soul. But at times you may not like what you see. Nothing can prepare you for coming face to face with your true self…

The literal voyage, with its pulling up of roots, is accompanied by a figurative voyage and the pulling apart of the self. Both teach you what defines you and fulfills you.

One comment

  1. I love Beth Leonard’s work and perspective! Gold star. Of the various “how-to” cruising books that have passed through our hands, hers is the only one I have kept and still reference now and then.

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