Tribute to our Captain
06 September 2013 | Richards Bay, South Africa
Jacolette and Joop
This is our last blog at sea. We left Richards Bay harbour on 4 December 2008, and now we have 10nm left before we will be sailing back in there again. Throughout the past 5 years Joop has taken ultimate responsibility for our safety whilst out at sea. We encountered challenges which ranged from fishing lines in various places, “thought to be” pirates in Venezuela, rowing for hours on end after we had overturned the dingy in St Lucia, hitting coral in Venezuela, rough seas at sea from Panama to Galapagos, wild anchorages in Tahiti during a “red zone”, narrow passages with surfing waves breaking next to us in atolls in French Polynesia, exit passages with only one working engine in Cook Islands, Southern Ocean waves on the Indian Ocean, getting up on the mast to fix stuff – any time and in any seas, and then of course, collecting the spinnaker sail from the water during day and night right around the world!
He has been a reliable seaman, but also a great father and helping hand in the galley, especially during the times we had newborns on board when the challenges increased. He has taught his boys fishing, sailing, steering the dingy, snorkelling, cycling, skateboarding, boogie boarding, to name but a few. He created places on board for them to jump, swing, slide, kick, catch, hit balls, and every other possible wish any boy could have.
To me, he made a dream possible.
One of my pre-marriage requirements was that he had to be able to live a dream with me, and he sure did! He took me to places which I had not even dreamt of, and he gave me experiences within nature which I will always treasure in my memories. He always gave me the diving opportunities while he stood back and looked after the kids, as he knew it was my passion. He never once complained about looking after the kids, to him it was a pleasure. He always had patience with me, wanting to go somewhere else also, something which I had read about and now we HAD to make a detour to there...
Even though we have come so far and have grown so much, it feels like we are at the beginning again, we will have to get to know each other again, back in this world. This world where the challenges are different and maybe not so much focussed on survival and safety, as our mind set has been.
Joop, thank you for spending the last 5 years with me, and for enabling me to life my dream for so many days and nights. Thank you for being you.
What can I say after reading such wonderful words from such a wonderful wife? Well at least I can try to share with others the beauty that I experience every day from inside Jacolette. A wife that enjoys life with me to the fullest. I can start my tribute to Jacolette at way before we even left Richards Bay, she never wanted the new curtains or leather couch but rather agreed with me to contribute towards the sailing fund, she can handle the sails and boat as well as me, she stands with me in rough weather, she has much more patience than me with our kids and calms me down if I get angry, she had 2 babies during our trip, she raised our kids on board and probably the hardest of all, she learned Johannes to read and he is ready to jump into last quarter of Grade one. Best of all she has a light from within that always shines!! Thanks Jacolette and praise to God, the Father, Son and Holy Spirit for bringing us safely home.