Take Two: Somali Pirates

While preparing to write my fictional account of the voyage of the Neko II around Africa, which Mr. Farago has been good enough to publish in serial on this site, I spent countless hours researching and reading the accounts of people fortunate enough to sail the globe in private yachts. One of the blogs I […]

Leaving Home – Chapter 12 – Somali Pirates

There are numerous ways to communicate from one vessel to another when at sea: maritime radio, lights flashing Morse code, semaphore flags, flaghoist signals, and gale pennants and hurricane flags. But when facing down a Johnny boat full of pirates motoring through light chop toward our stern, the Captain improvised his own communication. He snatched […]

Leaving Home – Chapter Five

It was dusk when we docked at the bustling Port Sa’id. None of the crew were permitted leave to go ashore. We topped off our diesel fuel tanks; we would be motoring through rather than traveling under sail. The Captain contracted a potbellied Egyptian canal pilot named Ibrahim to take us to port Tawfiq at the canal’s […]

Leaving Home – Chapter Four

A few short weeks before we sailed into Egyptian waters, President Gamal Abdel Nasser ordered the United Nations out of the country. His army reclaimed control of the Suez Canal. But there was more going on than a pissing contest between the Arab leader and the blue helmets of the latter-day debating society. Egypt’s hatred of […]

Leaving Home – Chapter Three

I learned to be a sailor, cruising the azul Atlantic waters down the coast of Portugal and crossing the Mediterranean. My Quartermaster title did not absolve me of any crew duties. First Mate Piest made certain of that. There were twelve of us at his command. He rotated us through every duty station in eight-hour […]

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