On November 25th, 1997, the barque Picton Castle, a three-masted, square-rigged tall ship, headed out from Lunenburg, Nova Scotia on a voyage around the world. Aboard ship a shifting crew of thirty, a combination of professional sailors and paying crew who were out $32,500 for the privilege of working “crew before the mast,” would travel for over a year and half, calling in at ports as exotic and varied as Aruba, Somoa, Bali and Zanzibar.
Fair Wind and Plenty of It tells the story of an obsession, as Captain Dan Moreland, driven by a desire to make his mark in the world of traditional sail, rallies forces to convert a sixty-nine-year-old North Sea trawler into a seaworthy tall ship, and then assembles the crew to sail it. It’s the story of the uneasy balance that is achieved on board, where insubordination and rancour must be kept in line among a crew whose only connection is their common desire to be part of this journey. And it is Rigel’s story: a man who was conceived the day his father laid the keel for his first boat, whose mother was a sailmaker, and who has to reconcile his family legacy with his own need to understand why he must take part in the voyage of the barque Picton Castle.
In Fair Wind and Plenty of It, Rigel Crockett tells a tale of shipboard camaraderie, gut-wrenching struggles and the near-mutinies that marked the year-and-a half journey -- where fellow shipmates proved to be as perilous as the ever-present sea.
From the Hardcover edition.