Canoes, Community & Connection

Greetings from Tahiti!

There’s far-flung getaways, and then there’s French Polynesia. I’ve had such a hard time keeping the timezones straight that it’s almost like I don’t know where I am. Somehow, though, I suppose that’s appropriate…it wouldn’t be the archetypical remote island destination if there was anything else nearby!

As we prepare for one of our longer days at sea on this voyage, I’m struck by how remarkable it is that the indigenous people who first settled these islands, did it all in wooden canoes.

I always appreciate these spots where we follow in the footsteps of the travellers of old, and this is case I must say I’m very grateful we’re not also doing it in wooden canoes 🙂

These islands are not as close together as you’ll find in the Adriatic, for example, and truly it must have taken incredible courage and skill to launch into the unknown as they did.

We spent a few days learning about Polynesian history and culture before embarking aboard our yacht, which I found particularly fascinating as they place such a great emphasis on connection and community, something that aligns very much with our ethos here at Wheel & Anchor.

In a remote archipelago, the challenge of keeping cultural traditions and connections between islands and over generations is already steep, and even moreso when you consider the dangers of life for seafaring peoples like the Polynesians.

I suppose it’s these challenging environments that bring out the strongest elements of human connectedness, and there is something very genuine about the Polynesian attitude toward community that resonates with me.

Or, I should say, resonates with us – I must say our group here has gelled particularly well since the beginning of the trip, perhaps influenced by the subtle energy of the Polynesians. It’s a mix of first time travellers with us and several who’ve joined us elsewhere, yet the spirit of likemindedness and camaraderie is such that you’d think we all already knew one another.

It’s exactly the vibe for cruising on crystal blue waters past white sand atolls, cocktails in hand and conversation flowing.

I comment on it because although we do all we can to set the stage for such connections to emerge, ultimately it’s something that has to happen on its own. It can only be invited…and then it’s up to all of us to release our apprehensions and get to know some other wandering souls on the road beside us.

I love to see it, as this is truly at the heart of our vision for travel – to get to that rarefied air where the group has gelled so well that the energy and the experience are elevated to a level where the magic starts to happen.

All in all it’s a wonderful beginning to a special adventure…more to share on this next week.

Briefly, on new trips – I’m pleased to release a second sailing of our popular Yachting the Turkish Mediterranean program, this one at the end of September 2024. Our first 2024 sailing filled up very quickly and we were only just able to secure a second one. Do take a look below if you’d like to join us.

I’ll leave it there for now, with lots more to come in the weeks ahead. Be well, be warm, and stay tuned for more new adventures coming down the pipeline.


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