Page 6

20 June 2000 Esbjerg, Denmark - Departure

John, in his beautiful Junker 26 called Amanda, followed me to the northern tip of Fanø. When I looked back, watching him until he was just a small dot, I was wondering when I'm going to see him and that approach again......

At the time of my departure, I was fed up (with) spending money. But my dad insisted, maybe wisely so, that I needed a life raft. (And also paid for it). I made two large compartments in the cockpit. One engine compartment and the other, well, you can never have too much storage space available. (At least not on a 22 ft sailboat). The boat had four beds, of which two were quarter berths. I kept one and have made use of the space for a card table (big), a smaller pantry and cupboards. Lots of cupboards. I installed an 80 litre water tank and all kinds of other things, I thought would come in handy. And to this date everything has been working the way it was intended.

So how big should a boat be and what do you need? No one is probably going to question that seaworthiness and your personal safety are the most important factors? Though that is rarely the first thing you hear when people are commenting on my boat. More is it the total lack of comfort (in their eyes). And I truly am very small when I lie beside most other boats. From my limited experience, I think that if the boat is seaworthy and your personal safety is OK, it's more the level of comfort you seek and size of your wallet that should decide what boat size to buy. But the first two factors remain the most important. I have seen lots of big boats on board which I wouldn't have felt as safe as I do on Trojka due to (their, edit) construction or condition.

I heard rumours that during the (Gulf, edit) War in Kuwait, the GPS signals were turned off and researched this for myself: The signals were not turned off, but were on the contrary sent out without any error signals to actually make them much more precise. The American soldiers were equipped with small Garmin GPS's. Quite basic models that most of us use as back-ups (today, edit), but (such, edit) rumours are hard to disprove.

I venture to suggest that it is easier to operate a bigger boat than a smaller one. When the wind is rising, sailing a small boat is somewhat harder and associated with more work. Quite often I have noticed bigger boats passing me with ease, while I was working hard just to be able to continue. A small boat is easily influenced by sea and wind. If I walk on the deck while sailing, the boat changes direction due to the changed weight distribution. I have tried sailing with only a tightly reefed mainsail in a strong breeze and not being able to get the boat to go by windpilot/autopilot - without my weight on the opposite side. Because of this, I have been forced to sit in the cockpit the whole time, which has been causing me annoyance.

I'm starting to have my doubts regarding my Ullermatic wind steering. It looks as if it has its limitations, on my boat at least. And it is extremely f...... noisy. It makes a noise every time it hits the outer stoppers, which means all the time. I have got to buy some rubber chocks to make it stop.

Because of the weather I went to Amrum and stayed there for a little week, before arriving at Heligoland.


To Page 7

From Esbjerg, Denmark to Tahiti aboard a Junker 22