Monday, February 28, 2011


When I first got my KINDLE I had to decide what book to first download into it. Since there are literally hundreds of thousands of books to choose from it could be a daunting decision. It could also be an expensive one too. Because even though books bought for e-readers like the KINDLE are cheaper than their printed editions they still represent a negative cash flow to ones wallet. Each one should be purchased with that in mind. But, in my case the decision was made easier because there are a large number of books in the public domain that can be downloaded free of charge and in my book (no pun intended) "free is good". So when I started searching for my first book to download it was a from the free public domain down load choices that I made my pick. It was the classic SAILING ALONE AROUND THE WORLD by Joshua Slocum. It's the autobiographical account of the first man to sail around the world whose epic journey begins almost nonchalantly:

 "I had resolved on a voyage around the world, and as the wind on the morning of April 24, 1895 was fair, at noon I weighed anchor set sail, and filled away from Boston, where the Spray had been moored snugly all winter. The twelve o'clock whistles were blowing just as the sloop shot ahead under full sail. A short board was made up the harbor on the port tack, then coming about she stood to seaward, with her boom well off to port, and swung past the ferries with lively heels. A photographer on the outer pier of East Boston got a picture of her as she swept by, her flag at the peak throwing her folds clear. A thrilling pulse beat high in me. My step was light on deck in the crisp air. I felt there could be no turning back, and that I was engaging in an adventure the meaning of which I thoroughly understood."

What follows is a very interesting nautical read written by a sailor who felt more comfortable on the water than he did on land. A voyage made in the days before VHF radios, GPS and satellite EPIRBS. It is truly an account of someone sailing alone around the world. Even better: You can down load it for free for the KINDLE here. But, if you don't have a KINDLE it is still a book worth reading on paper too! I recommend it no matter what form you read it on. Even though I own and have read a paperback copy of the book. It is a book that I think most sailors will want to read more than once. I know I do.

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