At the age of 44, in 1993, I retired from the software industry to fulfill a lifelong dream: to solo-circumnavigate the earth on a sailboat. In November 2001, I was a third of the way round on my 47-foot catamaran, when Hurricane Olga struck. Enroute from New York to Bermuda, I faced 60-foot waves and winds to 90 knots. Seasick and alone, I contemplated death for 36 hours. Weak from lack of food and sleep, I considered ending my anguish by falling overboard. I was saved by the knowledge that I owed it to the people who loved me, to try every trick of seamanship I knew, to survive.
I eventually reached safe harbor in St. George, Bermuda, and slept for 14 hours. I awoke to a sense of renewed life and the understanding that true wealth is measured in human relationships. Realizing that seasickness’ quick fix to discomfort, fear and despair, endangered my precious connections to people, I sold the boat. These days I get my sailing fix by writing about it.
I have been influenced by many authors, but was inspired to write this book by the works of Patrick O'Brian.