A funny thing happened when I was house sitting.
In my third year, I stayed on a yacht instead. A few years later, I married the yacht owner. Then a few years after that, we went sailing together. And because I am a writer, I wrote about that trip - because it was AMAZING.
I had never been sailing before and so it was no surprise that we turned circles in front of a tanker, nearly ran into a cliff in the dark, and tried to tow another yacht out to sea by its anchor. We also visited some of New Zealand's most iconic spots.
The story of this eventful trip is now available from Amazon and most other book stores both online and in store. There is also a link below to that will take you directly to the sales page on Amazon where it is a very good price.
But just so you can see that it was just as adventurous as house sitting, here are the first few pages to give you a taste of my writing style,and then the back cover below.
First Few Pages
As we walk along the marina through a forest of yacht masts, shoals of tiny fish skitter in the corners of the water. It is late at night and the reflections on their scales look like flashes of underwater fireworks. A lone seagull walks purposefully across the path, petulant at our intrusion on his recently deserted feeding grounds.
Our yacht is almost last on the left, its wooden bowsprit hanging over the path like an eager pet, and Phil pats it as he walks by, murmuring a quiet greeting. It is the middle of the night and there might be people sleeping in nearby boats. We don’t want to wake anyone.
Quietly, we climb on board and start to unlock the boat. Our boat has a center cockpit which houses all the steering and navigational equipment, like the ancient compass and 1980’s radar system. We climb into this first and find that someone has been here before us. The wooden door slats to the cabins doors are already pulled out and lying across the seats. I look at Phil in surprise.
He opens the small saloon type door on the right, and we look into the back cabin. It looks like an explosion in a wrecker’s yard. Bits of pipe and greasy chunks of metal cover the bedroom floor. Oily tools are spread across the narrow shelf under the windows, and the bed has our stored bags on it. The room looks as if every loose bit of metal has been thrown from the engine room by someone looking for treasure and not finding it.
Phil and I look at each other and I start complaining. “What the heck? Why did he leave such a mess? And you paid him fifty dollars?” I look at my husband accusingly even though I know he is not to blame.
Phil responds by asking me to lower my voice. Our boat is tied up among other boats in a marina and there may be someone nearby who knows the perpetrator, maybe even the person responsible for this mess, and apparently we don’t want to offend them.
I continue to grumble as I bring our bags on board and add to the clutter.
Of course the story really takes off when we set sail.
If a smooth sea never made a skilled sailor, then Nikki is in luck. The sea is in turmoil, the wind is on the nose, and the yacht is bouncing around like a bath toy.
Nikki and her husband, need to bring their old yacht from New Zealand to Australia. But first they have to negotiate New Zealand’s rugged East Coast from Napier to Cape Reinga. It’s a trip designed to test the most experienced sailor, and Nikki doesn’t know a boom from a jib.
Phil has to plot the course, steer the ship, and trim the sails, while Nikki begins the sailing trip of a lifetime more bilious than a rabbit on a roller coaster, and more like cargo than crew.
Phil is great at smoothing over problems, and fixing everything from tangled ropes to broken fan belts, but even he can’t fix the weather, and a cyclone threatens. Getting to Australia is looking unlikely when even getting from one town to another is a challenge.