Lin & Larry Pardey will be at the Toronto Boat Show this January (11th – 14th)! Lin writes:
Remember, it’s about sailing!
Spring refit time finally arrived here in the southern hemisphere. With the wind down, rain holding off for a week, we set to work on the paint, the varnish. I got my scrubbing gloves on and began removing spots of mildew that marred the white of the overhead. Every day I laid out a plan for the next item I’d attack. Larry was right there with me until the sixth day. It dawned bright, clear, warm. A light breeze ruffled the water – perfect for applying a coat of varnish to the skylight. “Forget working, let’s go sailing,” Larry said, throwing a wrench into what he jokingly calls “my tidy little plans.”
“But it’s going to rain tomorrow and I’ve already sanded the forehatch,” I countered.
“If it’s going to rain tomorrow, we’d better get out sailing today,” he announced.
Soon we were skimming away from the jetty. I sheeted in the jib and watched our wake straighten as our forward momentum gave the rudder traction. For the next few hours I forgot about spring refit and was reminded of the rule we’d made many years before when we were outfitting our very first offshore cruising boat together – no matter how long the list, clean the boat up, and get out sailing every two weeks. We’d learned getting out sailing as we outfitted or prepped for a voyage, we can see if our upgrades really worked, check to see if we’d forgotten to put something on the list, maybe even cross some things off as we found they weren’t really necessary. But even more important, getting out sailing served to remind us why we were doing all of this work. That was years ago, and Larry was right, it was the perfect choice this time too. (And by the way, it didn’t rain for three days so the varnish got done too.)
Lin Pardey writes:
Lin's boat, Taleisin Under Sail
Through the years, many people who have read and enjoyed our Cruising in Seraffyn books asked, “When are you going to write about your sailing adventures on board Taleisin?” As we worked building this bigger sister to our first offshore cruising boat we finished writing the four part series that told of the wondrous times we had sailing on board Seraffyn to explore the far reaches of the world. At the same time we wrote two practical books on voyaging under sail. These practical books lead to a demand from both readers and editors for ever more information on the how-to aspects of cruising. But even as Larry and I worked together on these practical volumes, I always wanted to return to the sailing narratives which spoke of the more personal aspects of our lives. Yet for some reason, every time I tried writing another book describing the adventuresome and romantic aspects of life afloat, I found myself stalled. Then I realized the genesis of the voyages we’ve had on board Taleisin lay in the story that came to be called, Bull Canyon, a Boatbuilder, a Writer and other Wildlife. This story had to be written before I could talk of going to sea. So, though the action in this book takes place on land, I hope sailors will enjoy Noah and the Roadrunner and see it as the prequel to Taleisin’s Tales.
- Lin Pardey
New Zealand 2011
We asked some of our favourite authors (many of whom have been part of the speaker’s series we used to run with Harbourfront), to tell us about their favourite nautical book. Here’s what some of them said:
First You Have to Row a Small Boat
Someone gave me First You Have to Row a Little Boat
by Richard Bode as a farewell gift when we set off from Virginia bound for Cape Horn. As we sailed south from the Cape Verde’s, Larry couldn’t get to sleep, so I decided to read to him. I picked up this book and after reading the first chapter we both decided to make this an evening ritual. We’d often discuss the chapters the next morning as we cleaned up after the night watches. Lovely comments about life lessons wrapped up in the simple art of learning to row a little boat.
Cochrane: The Real Master and Commander
Larry: Cochrane: The Real Master and Commander by David Cordingly is one of my favourites. I loved the Hornblower books, not for the blood-and-guts fighting but for the fine seamanship, excellent planning, and clever sailing tips I gleaned. To read Cochrane is to realize the exploits of Hornblower were not exaggerated but based almost completely on fact. Cochrane’s seamanship was amazing, as was his concern for the men under his command. His life was far more complicated than the fictional characters drawn from it. This book reads almost like a novel.
N by E
I read Rockwell Kent’s N by E when we were in Patagonia and was enchanted by Kent’s sparing prose and how it complimented his beautiful woodcut illustrations. Few books come so close to capturing the dream of all cruisers to go over the horizon, test oneself against the sea, and return, knowing oneself and one’s world more intimately and more completely than one ever has before. But Kent also captures the allure of high latitude cruising and depicts the indigenous Greenlanders he meets with compassion and great respect in an era when these people had not yet lost their native traditions. He gives us a glimpse of a world long since gone, but one that shares with our own the universal desire for human striving and personal betterment.
More author recommendations on the way!
For over thirty years, Lin and Larry Pardey have been sailing around the world, writing about their adventures, and showing others how to follow them. Unlike most modern cruisers they sail without any engine whatsoever!
The third edition of their cruising classic, The Capable Cruiser has just come out. It’s fully revised and updated, and has nine all new chapters including: ways to encourage your partner to share your dream; strategies for turning sudden engine failure into a minor incident; choosing safety equipment; repairing rigging at sea; and and “What do people worry about that never actually happens”.