Peterson cutter digest 4146

G'day All,

To Go Where No Peterson Cutter Has Gone Before

Last night, at the Royal Australian Naval Sailing Association, I attended
 friend and sailor John Vallentine's launch of his new book, "Sailing Through
 Russia -- From the Arctic to the Black Sea". It is a great read and
 documents the first-ever voyage of a private yacht from the tip of Norway to
 the Black sea through the canals and rivers of Russia, traversing both the
 Volga and Don rivers.

His Russian-fluent Dutch crew and grand vizier for the voyage, co-author
 and Moscow resident Maxine Maters, was there as well. It was a delight to
 see John again and meet the charming Maxine. John is truly a legendary
 sailor and has taken his F46 Tainui to places no one has gone before, not to
 mention many mostly seldom-visited outposts along the way during his many
 years of voyaging.

The photos he showed us of his journey are magnificent. Along the voyage
 through fjords, locks, canals, channels, lakes and rivers were the
 historical remnants of layers of Russian history visible in the overwhelming
 beauty of onion-domed churches, mouldering Soviet-era brick factories,
 rusting machinery, abandoned equipment, and the subliminal memory of the
 near-slaves who built the canals and locks and hauled the barges by hand up
 and down the Volga. As well, John gave us a glimpse into how it felt to be
 warmly greeted by local residents, who always brought food and vodka when
 they visited. At every stop the local media showed up to record the
 historic event. This is cruising like it used to be.

They HAD to write a book! No way out of it. See and for more about the voyages of Tainui and the book.


Jeff Stander
Reproduced from the Peterson cutter website, with permission)
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