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EVERYWHERE, EVERYTHING

Where did they go?

Nowhere, everywhere.

What did they accomplish?

Nothing, everything.

 

Arthur Beiser

 

I've been sailing around the world for eleven years on Exit Only, and what a trip it has been, full of agony and ecstasy, and everything in between.  I nearly died in a car accident in New Zealand, and I reckon that qualifies as agony.  In the ecstasy department, I sailed 33,000 miles around the world, and have seen the things sailing dreams are made of.

 

So where did we go?  Some people would say nowhere, but I would say, everywhere my heart desired, and everywhere I had the courage to point the bows of my sturdy catamaran.  It's all a matter of perspective.

 

If you are a die hard city dweller living in New York, Paris, Rome, or London, I suspect you would say nowhere.  After all, we didn't go to a single Broadway musical, or watch the new year change over in Times Square on December thirty-first.  We didn't walk down the Champs D'Elysee, walk under the Arc de Triomphe, visit the Sorbonne, or munch croissants at a sophisticated Paris cafe.  We didn't go to the Vatican or tour the Roman Coliseum.  We didn't ride gondolas in Venice or view the Leaning Tower of Pisa.  We didn't see Buckingham Palace, ride the tube, or visit the Millennium Dome on the River Thames.  So there you have it.  Hard core city dwellers are right.  We never went anywhere.

 

But before you pity our pathetic plight or heap reproach upon our clueless heads, let me tell you where we went.  We went everywhere most city dwellers never go.

 

 

We sailed through the Panama Canal, and spent the night on Gatun Lake in the land between the seas.  We swam with the penguins, seals, and white tip sharks in the Galapagos.  We watched lizards eating cactus blossoms and marine iguanas swimming along lava encrusted shores.

We sailed into Kontiki Land - the high volcanic Marquesas Islands - the land of ancient Polynesian warriors, and we walked through the ruins of their long abandoned villages.  We swam beneath a waterfall that was more than 1200 feet high, jumping off rocks into cool Polynesian pools.  We sailed the crystal clear lagoons of the Tuamotu Archipelagos, exploring the motus of Apataki with its pearl farms scattered across the lagoon.

We Med moored downtown on the Quay in Papeete and shopped in traditional markets.  We anchored in paradise in Moorea and hiked up to the Belvedere.  We visited Polynesian ruins in Raiatea and anchored in Beautiful Taaha.  We visited Michener's Bali Hai, Bora Bora, a Pacific crown jewel and personal sailing mecca that proved I was living my dreams.  In Bora Bora we explored a tabu motu where "extraterrestials"  established a now defunct French new age cult.

We visited Suvarov atoll and met the family that watches over this remote patch of paradise.  We restocked our yacht in American Samoa and then pointed our bows south to the Kingdom of Tonga.  We visited my favorite named island on planet earth - Malafakalava.  We snorkeled Mariner's Cave, and shopped in Niafu's narrow streets.  We sat around bonfires on the beach and made plans with other cruisers whether we would sail south to New Zealand or west to Australia.

We dodged uncharted reefs and undersea volcanoes on route to Fiji, and finally turned south to the land of the long white cloud, New Zealand.  We toured from the North Cape to Wellington, and rode the Lynx across the tempestuous Cook Straits to the South Island of New Zealand.  We visited glaciers, mountains, drove down Skipper's Canyon and up the Remarkables, and shot river rapids in jet boats.  We visited  Christchurch with its Antarctic staging center and visited Milford Sound in Fjord Land.

Next stop was New Caledonia and the Isle of Pines, a tiny Pacific paradise with clear water and beautiful reefs.  There were hikes in Prony Bay where jumping Spanish mackerels land on your boat and into your frying pan.

Next stop was Australia and the Great Barrier Reef with a ten thousand kilometer side trip into the Ozzie outback.  Then on to Brisbane, Sydney, Cairns, Townsville, Lizard Island, Thursday Island and Darwin.

Next stop Bali and remote Borneo,  traveling up remote rainforest rivers to commune with wild orangutans in the jungle.  We moved on to bustling Singapore and the Malaysian paradise of Langkawi.  We fed Eagles at the hole in the wall on Langkawi's north shore and cruised among the immense limestone pinnacles of Malaysia and Thailand.  Next came Phi Phi Island and Phuket in Thailand with a global tsunami that wreaked havoc in the Indian Ocean.

Then came the Maldives in the middle of the Indian Ocean - a clear water paradise, and the last outpost before entering the Gulf of Arabia.  Don't forget the adventures in Oman, Yemen, Eritrea, Sudan, and Egypt.  There was a Nile River cruise from Luxor to the High Aswan Dam visiting the ruins of the pharos' domain.  There were Pyramids in Giza and a two day passage through the Suez Canal.
 


We made an overnight sail to Israel, running the Israeli Navy gauntlet. We toured the ancient glory of Nimrod's fortress, the Holy Land, the Dead Sea, and Mitzpah Ramon crater.  Then we made a visit to Jordan's Wadi Rum and Petra's hidden kingdom.

The voyage continued on to Cyprus and Turkey, land of Crusader castles, Ephesus, Heriopolis, and waterfalls frozen in time at Pammukale.  Next, we sailed on to Greece, Italy, the  Balearics, and Spain.  Then we explored the pillars of Hercules at Gibraltar, the staging ground for our transatlantic adventure.

Next, we jumped off to the Canary and Cape Verde Islands, and across the Atlantic to Barbados.  Finally, there was the Caribbean with dozens of unique destinations before crossing our outbound track in Fort Lauderdale, eleven years after starting our global adventure.

 

Along the way we saw thousands of sunrises and sunsets, dozens of green flashes, and we watched the Milky Way make it's nightly journey across the sky.  Orion, Taurus, and the Pliades were our constant companions as we sailed on through our nights at sea.  We breathed clean air and swam in crystal clear waters for eleven years.  Those were the best eleven years of my life.

 

Perhaps die hard city dwellers are right.  Maybe we never went anywhere or accomplished anything.  After all, we didn't visit New York, London, Paris, or Rome.

 

I'll let you decide.  Where did we go?  Nowhere or everywhere?  What did we accomplish?  Nothing or everything?

 

 

GO WEST YOUNG MAN - SEASTEADING

 

Go west young man, and seek your fortune over the western horizon.  Such was the call to 19th century pioneers in North America.  The government encouraged westward expansion by offering homesteads - free parcels of land - to those brave souls who took up the challenge.

Times are different now.  All the land is taken, divided, and subdivided thousands of times, and new homesteads are no more.  All that remains are millions of miles of fences and unfriendly walls.  Postage stamp size estates with no trespassing signs demarcate the homesteads of yesteryear. 

 

Nevertheless, the pioneer spirit survives in the hearts of those who live in Water World.  As we sail west around the world, we aren't in search of land.  We are seasteading.

 

What is seasteading?  Seasteading is a way of life in which homesteads don't exist.  You sail on the ocean of your dreams, and wherever you drop your anchor becomes your temporary home - your seastead.    The oceans and waterways of the world constitute a massive aquatic seastead in which you are free to roam at will.  You may live in the same seastead for weeks, months, or years, or you can change to a new one each day.  Your seastead may be anywhere from the tropics to the arctic circle - wherever you have the courage to point the bow of your yacht.


People who seastead live in Water World.  Their home is on the oceans and seas that cover more than 70 percent of our planet.  Water World is a vast domain that transcends cultures, nationality, and politics.  Seasteaders are politically more neutral than the Swiss, and they come from all the nations of the earth.  Linguistic diversity and openness to all religions and cultures are hallmarks of this transoceanic community.

Water World accommodates everyone.  Our friends are German, French, Canadian, American, Thai, Malay, Indonesian, Australian, New Zealanders, Spanish - an endless ever changing list of seafarers who make seasteads their home, and seasteading their way of life.

Most people who seastead aren't on vacation and aren't running from the real world.  They have bills to pay and must earn a living like everyone else.  The big difference is that in Water World, they don't have a thirty year mortgage on the small patch of ocean where they anchor their yacht.  Their seastead belongs to no one and to everyone at the same time.  They have as much right to be on the seas or at anchor as anyone else.

In his wisdom, God made plenty of water for everyone, and I'm glad He did.  Otherwise, there would be water wars.  It wouldn't be long before the governments of the world divided the ocean up into smaller and smaller parcels, and seasteading would become a thing of the past.


Seasteading still is a viable way of life in most parts of the world.  There aren't enough of us sailing that it's worth the time and expense for most governments to closely regulate us.  But times are changing.  The industrialized nations of the west are  constantly looking for new sources of revenue, and if you remain too long in some European waters, they will charge VAT on your boat.  Fortunately, it's a big and beautiful world out there with plenty of places for seasteaders to drop their anchors and call home.

 

Seasteading is a great way of life.  If you purchase a small seaworthy yacht and save up your freedom chips, it won't be long before you can start an awesome adventure.  Your pioneer spirit will well up within you as you hoist your sails and seek your fortune over the western horizon.

Go west young man, go west.
 

 

 

TURKISH REFLECTIONS -  SCOTTY, BEAM ME UP


Where are you Scotty?  I need you to beam me up!

Actually, I don't want you to beam me up.  What I really want is for you to beam up Exit Only and drop her off at Kekova Roads in Turkey.  I'm ready for some Turkish cruising.  Turkey is the land of good people, great hospitality, and outstanding cruising destinations.

We spent two months cruising Turkish waters, and that's far too short of a time to discover all its wonders.  Unlike many cruising destinations, there are thousands of bays and inlets in which to anchor along its craggy coast, and the anchorages are secure.  The holding is usually good, and that means you can get off your boat and take a hike or inland trip without worrying about your anchor dragging.

While its true you have to take precautions and lock things up in the big cities, out in the anchorages you don't have to worry about night time boarders interested in your cash stash.  The only people we know who experienced skullduggery were med moored to quays in large towns where you are easy prey to petty thievery.  City thieves are slick operators; when they're in stealth mode, they can clean you out in a twinkling of an eye, and you won't know they were there until they're long gone.  But that's not unique to Turkey; that happens everywhere around the world.

There are lots of ways to rate cruising destinations, and what's important to a cruising sailor may mean little to a charterer who's more interested in marinas and fancy meals at the end of the day.  As far I'm concerned, Turkey gets five stars.  It has everything found in other great destination and so much more.

Turkey is special because it's different.  What sets Turkey apart and makes it head and shoulders above the rest, is that Turkey is interesting.  Crusader castles and ancient Greek ruins abound.  The ruins of Greece found on the Greek mainland pale in comparison to those found in Turkey.  A day trip to Ephesus will blow you away.  But you don't need to drive inland to discover the wonders of ancient Turkey and Greece.  You can snorkel among sunken ruins all along the coast.  If you ever wondered where Atlantis was, look no further.  It's lies in ruins beneath the waters of the the Turkish Coast.

The crusaders had a special affinity for building castles in Turkey overlooking the water.  I suppose seaside castles made a lot of sense, because supplying those fortresses by overland routes probably wouldn't work in troubled times.  Crusaders were invaders rather than invited guests, and they had to bring  much of their food and supplies with them or do without.  Bringing supplies in by sea was definitely the way to go when other routes didn't work.

Although cruisers may like the Hard Rock Cafe, they don't like hard rock anchorages.  You'll hear nothing but complaints from cruisers about anchorages that rock and roll.  When they put their anchor down for the night, they're looking for flat water.  We may bounce around the world when we sail offshore, but when we're at anchor, we don't want to rock and roll.  The picture at the top of this page shows a perfect anchorage with a mirror like surface reflecting the setting sun.  That's the stuff that cruising dreams are made of, and it happens nearly every day in Turkey.

 

Where are you Scotty?  I'm still waiting to hear from you.  It looks like Scotty is not around, and I'm on my own.  Oh well, at least I spent two months living my Turkish dreams.

 

Life is good.

 

 

 

TAKE THE PLUNGE AND ORDER THE RED SEA CHRONICLES.   JUMP INTO A GREAT CRUISING MULTIHULL ADVENTURE  DVD.  YOU WILL BE GLAD THAT YOU DID!

 

A FIRST CLASS SAILING ADVENTURE

Captain Dave and his family spent eleven years sailing around the world on their Privilege 39 catamaran, Exit Only. During the trip, the crew of Exit Only shot 200 hours of video with professional cameras to show people what it's like to sail on a small boat around the world.

The Red Sea Chronicles is a one hour and twenty-two minute feature film showing their adventures as Exit Only sails through Pirate Alley in the Gulf of Aden and up the Red Sea.  The professional footage documents their experiences in Oman, Yemen, Eritrea, Sudan, Egypt, and the Suez Canal.  It chronicles the rigors of traveling in a remote section of the world rarely visited by cruisers.  Exit Only dodges Yemeni pirates, fights a gale and sand storms in the Bab al Mandeb at the southern entrance to the Red Sea.  The crew explores deserted islands on the western shores of the Red Sea, and learns to check the cruising guides for land mines before venturing ashore.

The Red Sea Chronicles also has outstanding Special Features including an Instructional Video on Storm Management that tells sailors how to deal with storms at sea.

And don't forget the two Music Videos: "The Red Sea Blues", and "Captain - Save Our Souls".

The Red Sea Chronicles is a first class adventure that stokes the sailing dreams of both experienced and wannabe sailors alike.  Order your copy of the Red Sea Chronicles and experience the adventures of Exit Only as they sail around the world and up the Red Sea.
 

Meet The Crew

Dave Abbott - Captain

Captain Dave always dreamed of sailing around the world on his own sailboat, and his eleven year circumnavigation with his family made his dream come true.
 

Donna Abbott - First Mate

Donna earned her stripes the REALLY old fashioned way...by enduring the rigors of passage making for the thrill of exploring exotic ports across the globe.

 

Sarah Abbott - Deck Swab

Sarah is the newest member of the family and crew. Despite her limited sailing experience, she jumped right in to life on the high seas. Her fresh and enthusiastic perspective on cruising help make the Red Sea Chronicles so special.

 

David Abbott - Cameraman/Director/Editor/Narrator/Composer

David shot over 170 hours of footage on the voyage from Australia to Florida. He then spent a year and a half on dry land editing and producing the Red Sea Chronicles DVD. In addition to the narrating the film, David also scored, performed, and recorded the entire soundtrack for the project.

 

Wendy Abbott - Voice of Ninja Crab

Wendy is the daughter of Capt Dave and Donna. She sailed on Exit Only from Florida to New Zealand. Wendy guest stars as the voice of a Ninja Hermit Crab in the Red Sea


 

TOP TEN REASONS TO BUY THE RED SEA CHRONICLES

10. The Red Sea Chronicles is an affordable gift for the sailor in my life.  Where else can I get a totally awesome gift for only twenty bucks?  
 9. I work hard for a living, and I deserve to reward myself with the Red Sea Chronicles.  
 8. My Dream Machine could use a shot in the arm, and the Red Sea Chronicles will give it the boost that it needs.  
 7. Every minute spent watching The Red Sea Chronicles extends my life by a full year.  
 6. I want to see what it's like to cruise on a catamaran before I spend a bazillion dollars purchasing one.  
 5. I want to see how a catamaran handles in heavy weather.  
 4. I want to see the Storm Management video so I understand what I need to do when I get in a storm at sea.  
 3. If I buy The Red Sea Chronicles, then Maxing Out Media will start production on two new DVD's - Australia to the Red Sea, and Med Sea to the Caribbean.  
 2. I like the Maxing Out web site, and I would like to support the website by purchasing their DVD.  
 1. After watching the Red Sea Chronicles, I can finally see myself sailing on the ocean of my dreams.
 

REVIEWS

"Story, quality, music, people, boat... Just excellent."

"...w
e got the DVD yesterday and watched it last night (we had no problem with the different format at all), what a great adventure and well put together DVD it was entertaining as well as informative and funny at times, a great combination. Well done you guys are natural movie stars, Laura and I watched the DVD twice and I am sure we will watch it many more times in the future."

"
I hope you guys are going to make more DVDís of your previous sailing trips for us to enjoy."

"Amazing...Just watched your dvd The Red Sea Chronicles for the third time today...I called my boss at home and turned in my notice...I'm going sailing!"

"The best cruising video to date from any source and should be on the shelf of every one who shares the cruising spirit even if only in dreams."

"...a great video that transported me from a damp, cold day in Wales to cruising aboard Maxing Out in the Red Sea - pure nectar."

"The only "problem" is that this has left me wanting more of the same stuff, just from some of the other places Maxing Out has visited!"

"Thumbs up. I also wish the entire circumnavigation was documented, but this small portion in the Red Sea is excellent. Well done."

"
I just watched the Red Sea Chronicles and second what all the others have said. I'd love to see a whole series of Maxing Out DVDs...Good job!"

Red Sea Chronicles DVD Previews

 

The Red Sea Chronicles is now available!

 
  We are attacked by flying fish as we cross the Indian Ocean on our way to Salalah, Oman. When we make landfall, the local suq (market) helps us regain our land legs.


 

The riskier side of world cruising. In this episode we prepare to sail through "Pirate Alley" in the Gulf of Aden

 

 
We arrive in Aden with a damaged alternator and are delighted to find a superb local machine shop. As we prepare to leave, fellow cruisers are attacked by pirates.

 
We must sail through the notorious Bab el Mandeb (Gate of Sorrows) to enter the Red Sea. 50 knot winds and relentless sandstorms are ready and waiting on the other side


 



 

 

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Storm Management Offshore
Parachute Sea Anchor Chainplates
When To Deploy Chutes and Drogues

The Almost Never Fail Catamaran Anchoring System
How Big Should Your Anchor Be?
Far Horizons
Tsunami Damage - The Starboard Bow Takes A Licking
Everywhere, Everything
Go West Young Man - Seasteading
Beam Me Up Scotty

Ten Reasons Why Night Sailing Rocks
When Are You Coming Home?

Sailing to Borneo to See Wild Orangutans
Double Headsail Downwind Sailing
Grand Schemes And Other Important Things
Rigging Emergency Prevented - Listening To Your Boat

Dreams Do Come True
I Have A Dream

I Am Wandering, But Not Lost
Missing Out
The Facts of Life

Red Sea Rigors and Rumors
Never Surrender Your Dreams
Red Sea Sunsets

Exit Only Survives the Global Tsunami
The Sea Is So Big and My Ship Is So Small

34 Things I Learned in 33,000 Miles
Space Travel

Ten Disasters I Was Afraid Of That Never Happened
Kissing Cobras

Pirates of The Malacca Straits
The Tree That Wanted To Eat My Boat

Offshore Dream Machine for Circumnavigation
The Facts of Life Rafts

Surviving the Savage Seas
Abbott Drogue - Adjustable Medium Pull Drogue
You Must Know The Sea

Listen to the Sound of Your Dreams
Clouds Are a Sailor's Friend

Exit Only
Life Is Good
Getting Connected

First You Think It, And Then You Do It
My Addiction
Cook's Look at Lizard Island

I've Got Trade Wind Dreams
Storms Come and Go
Go Ahead.  Live Your Dreams.
The Next Step

Take Care of Your Autopilot So It Takes Care of You
Danger Zones On Board Exit Only
 

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