Wacek - first mate and proud Jack Russel (click to enlarge).
Latest position (click to enlarge).
The 56' Mikado ketch <i>Luka</i> - a dream come true. (Click to enlarge).
The sailor and his friend. It took a lifetime, but now at last Tomek is peering towards far horizons. All images courtesy of the expedition website.
Tomek and Wacek's voyage: "Im beginning to doubt if sailing around the world against the wind is a good idea"
Posted: Sep 21, 2007 06:10 pm EDT
(TheOceans.net) "Searching for gold is a God's trick to make us travel" says Tomek and Wacek's expedition website. The sailor and his Jack Russel first mate have been doing exactly that, for 198 days now.
In the latest log, Tomek reports:
"Were moving like a fly in pitch, I feel like a ridden horse. I promised myself that after I return I will put this tattoo on my shoulder: 'I will never again sail by any cape from east to west'. This is against nature, only an idiot like me could get such an idea... "
Hardship is Polands middle name
March 6th 2007 at 12:28 (GMT-08:00), Tomek kicked off his trip around the world single-handed and without stops from East to West. The voyage goes 'the wrong way' - that is against the prevailing winds.
Where you normally would adjust the sails a couple of times a day at the most, going against the winds makes for a far more stressful and demanding journey. "I have slept for seconds," Tomek reported the other day.
But hardship is the Polish' middle name and so Tomek has sailed against nature around infamous spots such as the Cape Horn and Cape of Good Hope. Why? For no reason at all - but to fulfill a lifelong dream.
Polish Tomasz Lewandowski grew up trailing about the Jeziorak lake in Poland.. His desire to sail the world alone is as old as he is. At 20, he fixed up Luka an old 7,5 m long sinuate yacht built from straw. It took one year to transform her - in his eyes at least - to the 'Princess of the Jeziorak'.
In the mid 80's, Tomek bought materials for Rudy, a 12 m long yacht he planned to build. Marriage (as usually happens in such circumstances, notes the website) put the vision of a sea-worthy yacht on hold, and Tomek found himself a responsible father building a new house instead.
After some years a hurricane" struck Tomek's life. The marriage and the home vanished, leaving Tomek with nothing left but an old dream.
He left for America in 1990 and worked in New Bedford (MA) fishing for scallops, and later on the Kodiak Island (Alaska), and the Bering Sea. Soon, he was the owner of a small construction company in Seattle (WA) and Mammoth Lakes (CA).
That's when he met Beata: The very first time I met Tomek, he said, one day Im going to sail the world alone and then Ill tell you all about it, she said.
For the next years, Tomek would drag Beata around marinas looking at yachts. "Close your eyes and imagine, thats my Luka standing there, he told her. "She was not there yet, but she already had a name," Beata says.
Late June in 2003, Beata came home to find that Tomek had left her for another woman. He was in Santa Barbara, CA, and it was love at first sight.
"A week later Tomek called...either he missed me or maybe he wanted to show off his new fiancé ...who knows?" Beata reports. Of course I went to CA right away, to see my new rival ;-)
Go to the expedition website for the rest of the story - about the first night onboard Luka, the Mikado 56' that finally seduced Tomek - and the long road before her maiden voyage around the world with Tomek, Wacek - and Beata at the keyboard back home.