Romain, Lien, Agathe, Alice & Mia have not cast off yet but are eagerly preparing their world cruising adventure. Little Mia was only born in March this year and the guys will be setting off on their 51 Outremer catamaran "EastWest" in 2023.
Thanks for answering my questions!
Where have you sailed to already?
Normandy, Brittany and the South of the UK with our monohull Izipizi (Pogo 36). Mediterranean (France, Corsica, Sardaigne, Spain, Italy, Croatia, Greece, Montenegro, Turkey): with our previous monohull La Foraine (Amel) on holidays and a rented catamaran in BVI and Bahamas.
Where are you planning to sail?
Around the world.
Why are you going to go full-time sailing?
Husband Romain has been sailing since he was a kid and introduced me to this when we met in 2009. We went sailing each summer and I loved it. We had this dream to “one day” sail the world together. I am a neuro-oncologist (brain tumours) and saw a lot of young people in palliative situations which made me realise we only have one life and need to live our dreams whenever we can, instead of pushing them back. We don’t know how much time we have left here.
In 2018 we decided on a 5-year plan to get us there financially.
COVID helped my husband to work from home 100% and only confirmed how eager we were to escape the rat race. I resigned from my job this summer, after having our 3rd little girl and will be taking care of the little ones while preparing our project.
What was the most challenging event you experienced while cruising and how did you deal with it?
We were in Greece sailing a catamaran with our oldest (she was 2 yo) and some friends when a Medicane (Mediterranean hurricane) was announced.
We secured the boat in a harbour and were stuck in a small harbour far away from everything, without any means of transportation, riding it out. Then our little girl got really sick (pneumonia) and had difficulties breathing. We reached out to the local community and the owners of a local restaurant drove us to a village where a doctor consulted twice a week, then after they took us to the pharmacy.
They spent half a day driving us around. Luckily our girl responded well to antibiotics because otherwise, she would have needed to be hospitalised.
What was your most amazing experience so far?
Honeymoon with my husband in the Bahamas on a 45ft catamaran. Very beautiful and the first time sailing just the two of us. Made me realise that we didn’t necessarily need a whole crew of friends to handle the boat, we were able to do it by ourselves.
What do you do when you had an argument on the boat and only have limited private space to reflect?
Try to work it out. If we need our space, we go for a swim or go to shore when possible.
If not, we try to respect the other’s need for space and leave him/her alone in their cabin or in front or wherever they went.
What do you miss the most from your "old" land-based lifestyle?
What would you say is the most valuable lesson you have learned while cruising?
Care for our planet, we only have one. Respect all cultures.
One thing you can not live without on the boat?
For me my sewing machine, for my husband his books I guess. And he needs his computer for work.
If you could travel back in time to the day before you set sail what advice would you give yourself?
I would have made this decision even earlier.
If you had superpowers what is the one thing you would change in the world?
Everyone loving and respecting our planet and the people living on it, independent of colours or cultures.
Your top tips for wannabe bluewater cruisers?
Don’t keep pushing the dream, Pick a date and stick to it.
You can find Romain, Lien, Agathe, Alice & Mia on Instagram.
Images & Copyright @EastWest family and used here to support the blog post
PS - if you would like your sailing family featured in my weekly "message in a bottle" feel free to submit your own answers here.