Bonita and Yoshi are an australian young couple travelled around Australia in a Toyota Coaster bus for 2 years. Now they started a new adventure, sailing on board Nandji, a 40ft cutter, searching a different way of life… We met them.
Tell us a little about yourself: how it started your adventure?
We are a young couple who decided to buy a sail boat rather than a house. We had saved for a house deposit but could never decide where we wanted to live and never felt certain, that is what we really wanted. We were living in our bus ‘froth’ travelling Western Australia at the time.
We had always pondered the thought of living on a yacht, until we ran into friends who had the same idea. They already had a small boat that they keep at a perth secure self storage and we wanted a slice of the pie too! These storage sites even have 24 hour drive up points so all you need is a calm sea and you can collect your boat and hit the water. That decided it!
Together we researched yachts and sailing. Constantly discussing this dream together, pushing each other towards purchasing a vessel. Finally there was enough talk and we took the plunge on Nandji. With almost no sailing experience, it was a bold move, but a decision we have no regrets about.
We decided to document our journey on youtube, mainly to show friends and family that we were fine. Learning as we go, we have sailed the Whitsunday’s and are slowly heading south along the East Coast of Australia.
You travelled around Australia in a Toyota Coaster bus for 2 years. Why then you have chosen to live in a sailboat?
Living in ‘froth’ really made us think about how we wanted to live. The simple, self sufficient way of life was very rewarding for us. Living in such a small space was good preparation for living on Nandji.
We spent all of our free time in the ocean, surfing, spearfishing and free-diving. It is where we feel comfortable and happy. For us a sailboat seemed the most perfect place for us to live, incorporating our love to travel and also the ocean. We live for adventures and love challenging ourselves amongst nature. A sailboat was the unknown, a whole new world of new experiences.
Which kind of boat is Nandji?
Nandji is a 40ft Roberts cutter rig, Sloop with a Teak Hull sandwiched between fibreglass. She has a 3/4 length Keel and a 41 horse power cummins diesel motor.
Nandji was unused for about a year when we bought her and for the first few months, everything that could possibly break, did break. This was an excellent opportunity for us to get stuck into fixing her and learning all about the boat. It was exactly what we needed.
A lot of people dream of living like you, but they are afraid. What advice can you give them?
Everyone that we’ve met along the way has said the only thing they regret is not doing it sooner. Life is short, make the most of today as no one is promised tomorrow. Sometimes you just have to take the leap and challenge yourself.
Things are always going to break, so you fix them. Things will go wrong at some stage, but it is how you over come and solve situations that help you grow as a person.
We believe life should be challenging, that is what makes it interesting. Believe in yourself and your abilities and play within those boundaries, you will be fine. You only get experience by doing so get out there and give it a shot!
On board you are three… Marley, your dog, is a real crew member?
The first thing we bought after buying Nandji was a life jacket for Marley. He is our little mate. Marley is an excellent dog and has adapted very well to the sailing life. He’s had to learn a few new commands regarding in and out of the cockpit and tender but has taken to them very quickly.
He is a constant source of smiles and laughter and we couldn’t imagine doing this journey without him. Marley has grown up by the ocean and spent a lot of time as a puppy on a tinny so he has always been confident in and around the water. Might be time to teach him to pull on some ropes though.
We believe life should be challenging, that is what makes it interesting. Believe in yourself and your abilities and play within those boundaries, you will be fine.
What about your next travels?
Our goal is to sail around the Pacific in 2017 visiting New Caledonia, Fiji, Tonga, Vanuatu, the Solomons and everywhere in between. We are currently trying to raise funds for the journey and preparing the boat. Like most boats she has got a lot of work to be ready for the task.
One foot in front of the other as we chip away towards achieving our goal. For now, we plan to keep heading down the east coast of Australia and exploring this coast line. The further south we go, the better the angle for sailing to Fiji, so we will keep cruising and adventuring.
Our classic question: what does it mean “sailing” for you?
Its a lot of things. Its humbling. It puts life into perspective allowing you to stop sweating the small stuff and start looking outwards towards the bigger picture. It is a means of connecting you with mother nature whilst discovering yourself.
You can learn a lot about yourself when push out of your comfort zone. Adventure, we have been to the most beautiful places that we never imagined possible. Freedom as the possibilities are endless and the world just got a lot smaller.