Mail call: especially pawsome deliveries!

24 Apr
rustic post office

Mail! It’s something we rarely get, unless it’s brought by visitors; our changeable routing and backwater destinations make it difficult. Spending a more extended time in one place (wow, almost two months already!) means we’ve had a chance to actually have things sent to us. That alone is kind of a novelty, but two special deliveries in a month? Unprecedented! (Honey- the new batteries, and the order from Defender- they do not count. sorry.)

The first was a valentine, sent from the other side of the Pacific by my friend Charlotte. Charlotte, like me, lives in a digital world- but as a cruiser, appreciates the rare touch of personal mail. I tried to remember the last time I got a letter in the mail, and I can’t. It’s been a very long time. That her card held a sweet note with a picture her gorgeous girls in it made me a little teary when I opened it up. Naturally, this was also in the marina office (no way was I waiting on a dinghy right back to the boat!), so now the whole office knows that I’m a little sappy. That’s fine, and it’s been reinforced by my reaction this week after learning the receptionist got engaged (trust me, if you saw that pretty ring on her lavishly hennaed hands, you’d get misty too) so they’re used to me now…

Love letter

The next came special delivery with stamps from France. France! (Niall immediately tore these off for his own collection, he’s kind of a Francophile. I have no idea how this happened but suspect our friends on Merlin.) Not only that, but it was delivered to the kids. That’s REALLY special and uncommon!

Bailey Boat Cat

The kids couldn’t wait, either, and opened it up immediately. Tucked carefully in the padded envelope was a copy of Bailey Boat Cat: Adventures of a Feline Afloat. Sweetly inscribed and pawtographed by Bailey and his humans, Louise and James, they sat in the main cabin and read it cover to cover. Together. In perfect peace and harmony. (This hasn’t always been the case lately…) 

our friend Maia with favorite ship’s cat Charlie of sv Ceilydh

Bailey presents an entertaining view of life afloat on his human’s Tayana 37, Nocturne. Paging through it myself once the kids were willing to share, I loved his clever bits of Whisker Wisdom (“To be curious on a boat is to have the world at your paws”) and nautical observations.

A tour through this book shares an intuitive look at what it’s like to live on a boat through Bailey’s feline eyes. It explores his world on Nocturne without fancy jargon, but plenty of little truths, an abundance of clever wit, and a large dose of pawsomeness. In the process, it actually offers a really nice view for the humans who wonder what this boat living thing is all about. Turning the last page, I even- dare I say it?- I even found myself thinking that maybe someday we should have a ship’s cat.

This would be a big step, since our idea of “pets on boats” only started a year ago with a wild gecko (Steve prefers accepts hand-fed snacks brought domain in the forward head, and has allowed a second pet on Totem- our dwarf hamster, Jiaozi). Thanks Bailey – we’ll just keep it our little secret for now.

Whisker Wisdom: Take a look around: life is pawesome! Yes, it is. You can grab a copy of Bailey Boat Cat: Adventures of a Feline Afloat in print or for your Kindle on Amazon.

Cat people know it makes us purrrfectly pleased when you read this on the Sailfeed website.

This article was syndicated from S/V Totem - a family sailing the world


  1. KAthleen Simis

    So THAT’s why her hands are henna’ed! Can’t wait to see that book! What a cute photo of them reading it together! So excited to cross an ocean with my cat for plenty of distraction and entertainment. My only concern is of her waking me up when I must get my beauty rest…

  2. Behan - s/v Totem

    Hi Taunya, it would definitely be a problem in some countries- do your homework on specific places you’ll visit. For the expected lifetime of our hamster, we’ll have no problems (however, it would be prohibited in Australia and get us into quite a lot of trouble if we tried to bring it in). Even if the boat was not well examined, I wouldn’t want to flout quarantine regulations that exist for pretty good reasons!

  3. Taunya

    I’m just wondering – does having a hamster or a gecko or other small pet impact your ability to enter some countries? What are the restrictions? I realize that having a cat or dog can make logistics particularly tricky and often expensive… but what about these small pets? How well is your boat examined for them and are there potential issues?

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