“That Feeling is really something special, that can be so hard to describe. There is something about it though, when all of the hard work comes together, you toss the dock lines off, and pull in the sail for the first time as you move further offshore. The boat heels over so slightly as the wind fills the sails and begins to move silently through the water and you can feel the power of the wind and sea flow through the boat and into you. It is a feeling of becoming one with nature and your surroundings, a peaceful, uplifting, free, and connected feeling that is so hard to describe it almost has to be felt for yourself.”
Curtis Jazwiecki and Kate Gladieux, full time sailors of Sailing Sweet Ruca and their sailing dog Roxy have been cruising the seas for years after making their dream of living on a boat a reality. They met over their love of sailing 10 years ago which led them leaving the fresh waters of the Great Lakes and making the oceans and seas of the globe their home address.
Now Curtis, and Kate, are sharing what “That Feeling” means to them as part of a new global influencer campaign for the Yacht Coatings division of AkzoNobel which will see them celebrate their love for the sea and reveal what “That Feeling” means to them.
Curtis got his first taste of sailing early on as both of his parents are boaters and he grew up with a genuine love for the water. He recalls: “When I was a child I used to build small boats from scrap wood and try to float them in the nearby river. There is a special indescribable feeling of happiness and accomplishment when a boat you have worked hard on enters the water for the first time and floats.”
Kate had a similar story with her parents both being sailors and growing up in a town on Lake Erie. She went on to join the junior race team in high school and “The feeling that boating/sailing gave me was a sense of freedom and connection with the earth and her elements. Being on the water feeds the soul. At that age, I felt like I could be myself when I was out on the water.”
Curtis runs his own business from the boat supporting businesses to compete, grow and thrive in a fast changing online world and combined with Kate’s experience as a language teacher they are inspiring sailors across the globe to take the leap they have and share the learnings of their experiences on their online platforms.
They both then competed in various races and completed two transatlantic crosses which took them from Tenerife, to the Canary Islands to Brazil. Kate particularly has a fondness for sharing these memories and inspiring the future sailors through teaching and training.
“Sharing our experiences, knowledge, and what we learn on social media has made our goal of sailing around the world more profound. We are able to show people what the elements are really like for those that are considering travelling far away from what they are used to. I think it is so important with the way we socialise and take in experiences as we live through each other and learn from each other on the internet.”
Sailing Sweet Ruca faced challenges along the way though. They both recalled a story of “hitting an unidentified object during the middle of a dark and rainy night in the middle of the Atlantic. It was very challenging to navigate how much more time we could continue sailing around the world and which countries we could visit for safe harbour. Upon our collision, the damage also slowed us down, knocking us back a year to wait for the next weather season.”
However, they arrived safely to Brazil and Uruguay and said the “experiences have taught me about patience and that life has chapters that sometimes take a turn, and it's how we deal with these drawbacks that makes us truly successful.”
Looking ahead to the future, Kate and Curtis are planning on sailing around Cape Horn and the beautiful fjords of Patagonia, before heading into the Pacific and completing a circumnavigation via the capes.
The couple continue to document and share their journey through their Youtube channel, social media platforms, and blog. Kate goes on to mention her pride in taking care of the boat and that her favourite maintenance task is cleaning the bottom of the boat! She states: “My favourite maintenance task is cleaning the bottom of the boat (when the water is warm and clean of course!) because I get to go swimming, get a workout in, soak up some vitamin D, and feel that satisfaction of seeing a smooth, clean, fast surface that will safely carry us to our next destination.”
Kate and Curtis sum up their perfect day at sea as fulfilling, challenging, educational and most importantly freeing.
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Our influencers have come together to curate this playlist for you to enjoy when you are out on the water.