FAQ about crossing an ocean; part two
February 9, 2020

Good morning!

We have passed our last timezone yesterday and are now 5 hours behind Amsterdam. Local time is 01.51. Only 300 nautical miles to go. Yesterday was a great day again. Only one squal (an episode of heavy rain and a lot of wind, out of the blue) hit us during the day, and this one had way less wind than the numerous others we had. The waves decreased and became more stable. While before we have coursed more south to miss several thunderstorms ( the new predictions seems to proof that was a great idea), we have just turned the bow directly towards Barbados. Expecting to arrive on Tuesday.

Today another five questions in the second part of the FAQs:

6. What if you’re confronted with a storm?

J: First of all, we try to always dodge storms. In two ways; only do passages in the right season and to carefully study long and short term weather predictions. When the expected weather is not perfect, we do not move.

S: But even with these precautions it can happen that a lot of wind, really high waves or thunderstorms hit us. Every storm will be different but we have thought about many situations. We have options to make the sails really small or even lower most of them. We have a storm door to close off the whole boat. We have a droque, which is a sea anchor that can be used to slow down the boat and keep it on course when really larges waves hit us.

J: I think the most important thing is that you fully trust your boat and each other. We know Yndeleau is capable, and we will be prepared as good as possible every time it could happen.

S: And we do not see storms as the biggest danger. (What so we think is the biggest danger? See FAQ 8)

7. What if one of you becomes sick?

J: It starts with keeping as healthy as possible and be a bit more precautioness in everything you do on deck. In the middle of our crossing, we were 2500 km away from doctors, hospitals and pharmacies… Therefor, we look like a small hospital with a pharmacy ourselves. We have taken a lot of treatments, antibiotics, painkillers and even a emergency dental filling set.

S: Furthermore we have learned to inject, stitch and do all kind of first aids. Next to that, we can call the doctors in NL 24/7 with our satellite phone. They can advise us what to do. What kind of antibiotics to take, etcetera. We don’t even have to wait in the waiting room ;-).

8. What’s the biggest danger?

S: In our opinion there are two. Fire and a collision. A collision with a ship is almost impossible because of our AIS Alarm system. All boats (99.9%) have an identification system which we can track. The alarm lets us known when another boat is closeby. Hitting a submerged container or a whale are bigger chances. But that is still a really, really, really small chance.

J: Fire can also happen. But we have taken all precautions and have many fire extinguish options.

S. Rationally stepping in a car on the A1 is more dangerous really.

9. What do you like the most about crossing?

S: Just doing it. Being outdoors all day and night, seeing a lot of nature, feeling very alive with many highs and lows, facing fears, being so far away from ‘normal life and that makes you reconsider your life ashore.

J: While the basic of our day are the same; wind, water and views. The days are totally different. The sunsets, the sunrises, the type of waves and clouds, the playful dolphins, the silly suicidal flying fish and the endless thoughts during the night watches. Where do you find this kind of freedom and beauty? The scary thought of being so far away from others and help is at the same time a wonderfully experience in trust and acceptance of each other, the boat and yourself. Do I dare to say life-changing?

10. What do you dislike most?

S: Sometimes you feel so tired physically. Some nights the sleep is really bad. Broken shifts create a dragging physical tiredness, I can really imagine how hard the first months/years are for new parents šŸ˜‰ let alone parents on a boat: you have my deepest respect! Some days you get smashed all over the boat with waves hitting. I have never had so many bruises. Yesterday I was brushing my teeth, and a big wave swept all dishes of the countertop. The fish bucket fell against my leg and the jucky juices drips down on me. Arrrrr…

J: The constant movement and shakedowns indeed. Sometimes I am really annoyed and just want to scream. I just baked bread and you couldnt stand without being thrown to the kitchen counter many times. Or when you open a closet and a big waves smashes onto the boat and everything falls out. Luckily, we didn’t have long periods of no wind yet this passage, that is very annoying as well.

That were the 10 questions. We will post more FAQs in the future. So let us know if you have any burning questjons? For now; 2 more nights to go. A thunder in the distance lights up the sky. These nights are so beautiful!

Sent from Iridium Mail & Web.


  1. Stefan de Munck

    Schiet al lekker op! Top hoor

  2. Bart en Carla

    Wat een fijn vooruitzicht dat jullie er bijna zijn! En blijf vooral schrijven!

  3. Anton

    Iā€™m so proud on both of you. Kan vaak niet precies onder woorden brengen wat die trots nou precies is. Want ook in het dagelijks leven hier in nederland zijn de uitdagingen groot en de hoogte en dieptepunten dicht bij. En vele jonge mensen moeten die uitdagingen, werk, partner, kids, enz, enz een plek geven. …….ik hou van jullie

  4. Tjalling Janssen

    Beste Jurre en Susan,

    Hebben zojuist jullie verslag gelezen. Nog twee nachten zeilen en dan zijn jullie bij Barbados. Geweldig mensen.
    Momenteel waait er hier in Nederland een stevige storm. Prachtig weer dus voor een wandeling.
    Veel succes de komende dagen.
    Vriendelijke groeten van Marian en Tjalling.

  5. Emilie

    Zo leuk Suus en Jur, jullie doen het toch mooi maar!
    Nog eventjes en dan hopelijk het anker uit of vaste land onder je voeten. Zon, Strand en Wijn! XX

  6. Robin Pot

    Heerlijk dat al die vragen gewoon exact de vragen zijn die ik heb. Fijn dat jullie er bijna zijn. Het is toch altijd weer even de dag beginnen met jullie predictwind link om te kijken waar jullie dobberen.

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.