I’m sorry for interrupting my narrative about Atlantic crossing. But this encounter is worth telling and sharing.
To start with… I was never happy to meet my fellow countrymen abroad. The only reason for that: they usually appear to be “turistus vulgaris”. Preoccupied mother, shouting at naughty children, and half-drunk father. They take vacations once in a year and make a trip, thoroughtly planned by travel agency. They visit common see-sights and regard themselves extremely experienced travellers, when they get a bit further than Finland or Ukraine.
So I guess you understand why I didn’t jump from excitement, when Chris returned and told me that he met a Russian from Saint-Petersburg. But this was completely different case…
In Cabanga marina, where we stay, Sergey was searching for a yacht shop. Unfortunately, local administration doesn’t speak English at all. Chris found him, desperate in fruitless attempts to get any information from them.
Sergey was a sailor from a Russian yacht “Scorpius”. Her genoa got splits while Atlantic crossing. So they made out-of-schedule stop in Recife, Brazil, to fix it somewhat before solid repairments in Rio. Sergey was sent with a mission to find lines for trimming. Chris borrowed him ours, and this is how we met and I learned the story of “Scorpius”.
Crew of 30-meters sloop “Scorpius” makes the circumnavigation that, if successful, will become the longest in time and distance in history. Their route started in Sochi and lies through:
- Atlantic ocean;
- goes around Antarctica with possible entry to the Ross sea (!!!),
- crosses Pacific ocean from south to north,
- goes around Arctica, including Great Northern way (!!!)
- crosses Pacific from north to south till French Polinesia,
- Indian ocean,
- around Africa through Mediterranean and back to Russia.
Ambitious? I bet you couldn’t imagine more than this! But only setting great aims, we can reach significant results, don’t we?
The owner of the boat and “father of a mission” is Russian ex-businessman, sailor and skydiver Sergey Nizovtsev. His business was “traditionally Russian”: he’s a fan of banya (Russian sauna) and organized production and destribution of… banya switches.
When I asked Sergey, how the idea of expedition was born, he, with typical Russian modesty and sense of humour, answered: “Just once was sitting and thinking, what to do”. The further we dream, the further we get!
The crew of “Scorpius” is half-Russian, half-Ukranian, that practically all the same. Among members – experienced sailors and skydivers, some of them have been to Arctica and Antarctica before. Pleasant to realise that world is full of adventurous and courageous people.
At day of departure Chris and me made a visit on board. The boat is modern with spacious deck and cockpit. Cozy living room, bedrooms and kitchen with microwave and a big freezer. Of course, the boat is equipped with all necessary electronics. Sails are rolled automatically too.
To track expedition and find more information you can here: http://www.nizovtsev.net/ – Official site of “Scorpius” expedition. It’s in Russian.
“Scorpius” and his crew made me recall that my motherland is a country of Semen Dezhnev and Ivan Kruzenshtern, Faddey Bellingshauzen and Mikhail Lazarev. Here in Brazil, I feel proud to be Russian.
Good wind and open ways to you, Scorpius!
Maybe, the next time I will feel happy to meet Russians abroad.
P.S. Semen Dezhnev – in 17th century opened the straight between Asia and America, 80 years before Vitus Bering;
Ivan Kruzenshtern – the head of the first Russian circumnavigation;
Faggey Bellingshausen and Mikhail Lazarev – admirals, whose expedition opened the continent of Antarctica.
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