30.8.2005 Yacht Club Sindbad, Helsinki,
After two nights and a good sauna we motored the 50-mile strech from Lehtma
to Hanko over the sunny and calm Gulf of Finland. Clearance was fast and
easy, a copy of the crewlist was enough. Then we tied in the Hanko guest
harbour. We felt pretty funny. We didn't quite know what to do. We called a few
friends, went for a pizza, and were back to boat and in bed at 9 pm. The next
day our friends realised that we are back in Finland. Päivi drove her motorbike
to Hanko while Busse invited us to his cabin in Lappohja. The logistic solution
was that Hannu drove Päivi's bike and the girls took Kristiina. Gosh, how
shallow and narrow the route past the numerous islets and islands was. It didn't
help that the chart was old and didn't match the buoys. We almost got lost
because of Busse's instructions where two islands had changed place. But we made
it, the 15-mile passage and docking without the skipper. At the cabin we
naturally had sauna and barbecue, and sat long into the lovely summer night.
Next day we motored to Elisaari, and what else, had a sauna and barbecue
again. On Tuesday it was time to move on to Auli's parents' house in Porkkala,
and meet all the relatives before the hulabaloo.
We tried the flags in Elisaari...
...and had a sauna.
Meetings: father (85 yrs) ...
...and Minna (14 yrs)
Then we had the very last passage, from Porkkala to Sindbad via
Lähteelä. We were so excited that we left too early and had to slow down by
reducing sails. The weather was fantastic, sunny and perfect beam wind. The
first to meet us was Sindbad's second commodore Kotilainen, who brought
us local newspapers. Handing those over, the two boats were so close each other
that only a page could have fitted between. One of the most dangerous situations
on our trip! Next yacht to meet us was Iiris from Kotka, and after
Rysäkari came the boats from Sindbad: Merianu, Tucana, Victoria, Eveliina,
JuLies, Finnbird, Harmy (sisteryacht to Kristiina).
Maréne brings newspapers on a rode.
They went 7 knots, we 3. The collision was close.
On the right Iiris from Kotka.
With horns and flags we arrived to Sindbad, our home port. The
crowd was big, hosted by Tommi at Café Meri. He started an interwiev
immediately and after that started a hugging line. It was fantastic to meet so
many friends! We were astonished of all the gifts we got, million thanks to
everybody! It was great to return feeling that people had been waiting for us.
Photo: Leena Aro.
Photo: Leena Aro.
Photo: Leena Aro.
Photo: Leena Aro.
A dream cannot be fullfilled without
other people nor without an effect on other people. The journey was not easy
time for our parents, who hided their concern to support and interest. Thanks to
Our brothers, Jaska and Antti, have taken care of all the things at home,
fullfilling our wishes and needs from taking care of the business to sending a
dishwashing brush. Without them we would not have made it, so special thanks to
world's best brothers.
Thanks to rest of the relatives, they have helped and remembered us.
Thanks to friends - old and new. Meeting people has been one of the best
experiences on our journey. So many has helped us, given advice and presents,
invited at home or shared a meal. Unforgettable moments.
Thanks for all who sent us feedback or mail. It has been fun to get e-mails from
unknown persons. That has inspired us to update the homepage.
Thanks to crew and visitors. Alltogether 19 persons sailed with us, sharing the
joy, fear, inconvenience and pleasures. The youngest has been Anni 11 years, and
the oldest Olli 70 years.
Thanks to the sponsors. The material support has brought its own share of
responsibilities and content.
Of all the people we met during our journey we remember: Risto, Markku and Ville
(m/v Ferdinand around Iceland); Carsten and Margit (s/y Kristina on the Faroe
Islands); Raimo and Martina (the best cook in Greenland); Jean-Guy (a pile of
charts); Paul (unforgettable evening in Quebec); Liz; Bill (blues in Chicago);
Laura (s/y 7 Roses, tough solosailor with the dogs Stella & Sultan), Michael
(the captain of LaVida and our crew on Welland canal, we met him three times in
different parts of America); people at Turner marina; Maciej (helpful Polish in
California); Mejías family in Cuba as well as Iliana and Olli; Lissu (world's
best crew); Heka and Marja (hospitality and unforgettable moments in the Panama
jungle); Jukka, Jorma, Markku; Riku, Iiro and Marja (s/y Cassandra); Henry (s/y
Arlesienne) and Titta; Gustav and Tina (s/y Caminante); Andy and Lisa (s/y
Indefatigable, idea to sail to Alaska); Bo and Vivi-Maj (s/y Lorna) as well as
the rest of the Swedes; Ray (Visby 1998, Opua 2002); Dennis and Xenia (hiking
and sailing in NZ); Robert; Pilviö family and the rest of the Finns in NZ,
especially Liisa K.; Peter and Lyndall (s/y illywhacker); Nicolas and
Dominique (s/y Chaski); Mike and Delphi (s/y Trig); Paavo-Paul (who introduced
us the Alaskan Finns); Pirkko and Antti (hospitality and unforgettable stories
in Alaska); Maria and Timo; Minna; Nina (humor and rapid changes) as well as
Phil and Don; Richard (the best sauna in Seward); Aldona in Kodiak; our
neighbours in Cordova: Jean and Sylvie, Danny and Deidre, Bruce and Lilli as
well as the rest of the villagers. Mikko in Nanaimo; Ulrika and Baden; Shane and
Stephanie as well as Leo and the others in Sointula; Ossi and Sisko; Jukka (hospitality
in Nicaragua), Irmeli and Tapio (s/y Marita), Eija and Ari (s/y Arctic Lady),
Raimo and Hannu (s/y Noomi), Riitta and Pekka (s/y Sarema), Verena and Harald
(s/y Miss Sophie, plenty of miles together). And our crew: Bosson, Jonna, Juha,
Antti, Lissu and Jukka.
A dream come true
The journey has been very much what we expected. The hardest things haven't been
sailing or handling the boat, but changing the lifestyle. We have to confess,
that in the beginning we even missed work or some similar activity.
We have lived four years a different kind of life, and experienced wonderful
things. All this have given us strenght to work, and respect the ordinary
everyday life more than before. We have met people and lifestyles that have
opened our eyes and broadened our narrow opinions. We hope to maintain the wide
thinking from now on.
The best gift, however, has been the awareness that it is possible to fullfill
your dreams. It takes work, courage and giving up something else. But it is
After the return hassle, we put up a new home on
dry land. Not too far from the harbour, however, reaching out from the window we
might see a mast or two. The new home has a couple of more squaremeters than
Kristiina, it doesn't rock and roll. Shower is not at the balcony and the fridge
has a door. When you open that door, food will remain on the shelves (I
Hannu returns to work for the LVI Tekniikka Aulin Ltd. Auli lives as a
freenlance writer as long as someone makes a good offer. She writes a book and
enjoys the role of an aunt.
4 years, 3 months and 15 days i.e. 1545 days
43.742 nautical miles (twice around the world)
23 countries and three autonomous areas (with own flag)
19 states in USA and 5 states in Canada
98 harbours with a fee
51 fuelling stations
5 over 2000-mile passages (from 16 to 23 days)
230 homepage updates
6078 card plays
The homepage will remain here for the time being and we will add some new
photos to various parts. After a while it's available also on CD.
Twenty years from
you will be more dissapointed by the things that you didn't do
than the ones that you did do.
So throw off the bowlines.
Sail away from the safe harbour.
Catch the tradewinds in your sails.
To these words of Mark Twain, which I wrote on my notebook at the Vancouver
maritime museum, we end the logbook of Kristiina. Thanks for sailing with us.
Keep the curiosity and dreams.