Mowat Moments

Teresa Carey Words 15 Comments

It is decided that my new favorite author is Farley Mowat. After having read and reread the expressions that Coelho inspires me with, I have found an author with a different sort of inspiration. I can’t say that Mowat’s adventures inspire me because of his flawless skills or his admirable courage and he certainly doesn’t compare to Coelho’s ability to weave myth with truth. No, instead, Mowat is the only author that has produced bellowing laughter from the depths of my stomach even when others are trying to sleep. I just can’t help it.

I began reading Farley Mowat’s The Boat who Wouldn’t Float just a few days ago and I’m already looking forward to reading more of his books. The Boat Who Wouldn’t Float is the true misadventures of Mowat and his friends aboard Happy Adventure as they sail the waters that I’m now bound for. Mowat’s journey reminds me of the first expedition I sailed with my father.

Dad and I boarded Applerush our Ranger 23 when I was just 15 and headed out onto Lake Michigan. Turning her bow toward the Manitou islands, we began to experience mishap after mishap. So frequent were the debacles that our slogan became “one fiasco after another,” which we would say in unison multiple times each day, cued only by a knowing glance into each other’s eyes. Most of the details of that journey I can’t recall, although buried in a cardboard box in the basement of my parent’s house is an A+ English paper titled; Run to the Manitous: Adventures on the High Seas, which I’m sure would tell the story best.

What is remarkable about Farley Mowat’s story is that despite being repeatedly faced with wild and sometimes dangerous misfortunes, he continues to go to sea. He even repeatedly ventures out into the fog without a properly working compass. Call it bravery, or call it…, but whatever you call it, you will always call it funny! I’ve taken such a liking to Mowat’s misadventures that I decided to call my own misadventures “Mowat Moments.”

Comments 15

  1. bobanero

    This is perhaps my favorite sailing book of all time. I found it by accident on the book exchange shelf at the Cull House. I envy you for having the opportunity to sail in those waters of Newfoundland.

  2. Capt. Jay

    Sorry as my comment dose not pertain to the book. I have one of your videos from youtube in bedded in my web site: My wife, our 3 year old little girl and my self live on a 36ft 1974 seafarer s/v Tarquin in s.w. Florida. I all so have been sailing around since 2008 have seen some cool stuff along the way. South Carolina is as far north as i have been aboard this ship. South to the keys and on to the Caribbean is where my passion lies. I would love to interview you and or anyone that lives aboard a sail boat for my web site, I all so except articles, pic’s, and video on all areas of boating. Being a writer my self I have submitted articles to southwinds mag. and boatus look for my work in the next few months.
    If interested please feel free to contact me E-mail: or call: 239-919-9137 Capt. Jay

  3. Denis

    While sailing today in the space of about twenty minutes I recommended Farley Mowat (great to read and a fun name to say) and Bill Bryson. Both will have you reading way later than you ought to be up and laughing out loud.

  4. Douglas

    Sometimes it is good to not take ourselves or the situations we find ourselves in too seriously. It was a wise man/woman who first said “Don’t take life too seriously, you’ll never get out of it alive”

  5. Douglas

    And, may I say, one of the things that I find most apealing about you is that unless you are asleep, you always seem to have a smile ready. 🙂

  6. Paul Elkins


    Someone forwarded one of your videos to me and I’ve also taken a gander at your blog. Nice!
    You remind me of my friend Steve Roberts who years back sold his belongings, had a recumbent bike made and traveled the states for 14 years. He currently lives on a sail boat not much larger than yours. I don’t have his link but look up his name and ‘microship’ or bahemoth. He is thee boating geek guru. Any questions on boating electronics or communication systems, he’s your man.


  7. Bill Reiter

    Thank you. Mowat is on my own “A-List.” And the movie “Never Cry Wolf (1983)” based on his novel of the same name is still my absolute, all-time, number one. I’m contemplating chucking it all and living on a sailboat too. You’re an inspiration. ‘Keep on keepin’ on…’

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