Q: How did you learn to sail?

It was a process starting from 2005 until the present day.  Our strategy included reading, classroom coursework, and practical experience.   in We raced as crew on other people's boats in the Great Salt Lake, then Lake Mead with the Nevada Yacht Club.  We took basic ASA Certification Classes in Hawaii with a captained charter, we sailed a small lake sailor from 2008-2012, we chartered boats in Catalina, California and Key West Florida, then we practiced with Sonrisa from November 2012 - February 28, 2016  before officially casting off.  The full story is detailed in blog posts with category labels: Learning to Sail.

Q: How did you fund your trip to go sailing?

This, too, was a process starting from 2005 until we fully funded our sail kitty at the end of 2015.  We did it the old fashioned way: worked, paid off debt, saved up money, then left.  The full story is in the process of being told in blog posts with category labels: "Sail Kitty".  

Q: How much does it cost to circumnavigate?

So far, we are running at an average cost of $4,951.00 per month, plus the cost of purchasing, carrying, and refitting Sonrisa at $190,825.  This is a generous budget and allows us to have full insurance coverages, scuba dive, take land tours, and eat out to our heart's content.  We really could rein it in a bit.  For all the dirty details, check out www.oddgodfrey.com/costtally.  

Q: How did you find and decide on Sonrisa?

A: She found us. It was a pretty easy decision, especially after we had read John Vigor's Twenty Used Sailboats to Take You Anywhere.  For more detail on this process, read the series of five posts starting with Finding Sonrisa.  

Q: How did you refit Sonrisa?  Do you do the maintenance all yourself?  

A: This is a long story, one I will start writing about after the Sail Kitty Series is finished.  In a nutshell, we did as much of the work ourselves as we could, leaving the rigging, sail making, and dodger/bimini covers to the professionals.  It's good to know how to fix things out at sea, so we figured we may as well learn. Stay tuned for more detail on the refit story next year.  Nigel Caulder's book the Boatowner's Mechanical and Electrical Manual is indispensable for this purpose.  

Q:  How did you plan the path around the world?

A: Andrew had a handful of places in his mind he simply had to explore:  Vanuatu's volcano and Thai Food are the top two reasons he cites for casting off.  (I told him a while ago you can just fly to Thailand to eat Thai food, but he prefers the Long Way.)  Reading various blogs and Jimmy Cornnel's books of Pilot Charts, World Cruising Routes, and World Cruising Destinations are the main tools we've used for plotting the big picture.  Of course, each passage requires detailed review of charts and navigation planning.

Q: How do you figure out visa/port of entry requirements?

A: Generally an internet web search of a country's visa/port of entry requirements are sufficient to tell you what you need to know at a high level, sometimes you can even find documentation to fill out in advance.  Jimmy Cornell's World Cruising Destinations is also helpful, and in the end, a smiling face and patience with the runaround process of going from one government office to another is key. 

Q: Did you read any books/blogs that helped you learn how to sail?  

Many.  These are a list of our favorites: 

Understanding the Experience: 

The Long Way, Bernard Moitessier

Dove, Robin Lee Graham

Endurance, Shackleton's Incredible Voyage by Arthur Lansing

Sailing Around the World Alone, by Joshua Slocum

Chasing the Horizon: The Life and Times of a Modern Sea Gypsey, By Fatty Goodlander

Love with a Chance of Drowning, by Torre DeRoche

Bumfuzzle, Blog, by Pat Schulte

76 Days Adrift, Steve Callahan

Storm Tactics:

Storm Tactics Handbook, by Lin and Larry Pardey

Sailing a Serious Ocean, by John Kretchmer

Circumnavigating/Cruising Generally:

The Voyager's Handbook, By Beth Leonard

How to Sail Around the World, By Hal Roth

Creative Anchoring, By Fatty Goodlander

The Practical Navigator, By Bowman

Cooking Aboard:

The Cruising Chef Cookbook, by Michael Groanwald

The Care and Feeding of Sailing Crew, by Lin Pardey

Choosing, Surveying or Refitting a Sailboat:

The Capable Cruiser, by Lin and Larry Pardey

Buy, Outfit and Sail, By Fatty Goodlander

Twenty Used Sailboats to Take You Anywhere, John Vigor

Boatowner's Mechanical and Electrical Manual, By Nigel Caulder

Route Planning:

World Cruising Routes, by Jimmy Cornnel

World Cruising Destinations, by Jimmy Cornnel

World Ocean Atlas, by Jimmy Cornnel