A Tale of Two Yachts

A Tale of Two Yachts
By Barbara White

A joyous comparative study of two kindred voyages undertaken a lifetime apart.

Barbara White and her husband set out on their voyage of circumnavigation from Plymouth in the UK in 2015 on their yacht Zoonie. In this delightful seafaring tale, Barbara compares her voyage and the trials and tribulations she and Rob encountered with that of Norwegian couple Erling and Julie Tambs, who had sailed a similar westwards route 87 years before on their yacht Teddy.

The comparisons made by Barbara between one yacht with technology and an engine and the other with nothing but sails and the enthusiasm of the skipper, makes for a great read. In the end, the fate of the two yachts is determined by the elements – that which no sailor, no matter how advanced their technology or developed their skills, can control – and the intervention and generosity of the people present when disaster strikes.

Erling Tambs and his wife Julie left Norway in 1928 on the Colin Archer-designed former pilot cutter Teddy, but lost her off New Zealand in 1932. They were lucky to survive, along with their two children and the ship’s dog.

In “A Tale of Two Yachts”, Barbara interweaves incidents from Teddy’s voyage, with Zoonie’s progress as far as New Zealand. While the courses both yachts took to New Zealand are similar, there are differences due to the era of both voyages. Barbara writes a very readable story with her insights into how the crew of the Teddy must have fared without the technology that she and Rob had available to them on Zoonie.

As Barbara and Rob left the United Kingdom to cross the Bay of Biscay, they enjoyed fond memories of the Tall Ship Stavros S Niarchos where they had met. Nearly 90 years earlier, Erling and Julie were defying the Norwegian authorities when they set out from Ulvoysund in Norway.

Barbara intersperses excerpts from The Cruise of the Teddy into a A Tale of Two Yachts to provide a thoroughly enjoyable story of how both journeys experienced storms, dramatic passages and the warmth, welcome and help from fellow sailors and people they met on their respective voyages.

A Tale of Two Yachts offers an insight to lands and lives afar, all the while reflecting on what it means – and takes – to commit oneself to such a challenging expedition afloat. This is at heart a tale of two couples, with a shared love for life and for the sea.

By: Barbara White

Publisher: Barbara White (27 May 2022)

ISBN-13: 978-1739687403

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