View Full Version : Am reading a neat cruising yarn

Nicholas Scheuer
08-23-2009, 08:00 AM
On our recent vacation in Norway visiting a cousin of my wife's who was raised in N Illinois and married a Norwegian she met at UW-Madison 40 years ago I began to read the original manuscript of a book wrttten by the cousin's uncle. This original manuscript (502 pages, double-spaced, one-side copy) is the only text in English for a book that was published in Norwegian.

I brought home a new second copy so that I could finish reading their tale telling how in the 1970's a Madison, Wisconsin newspaper journalist of Norwegian ancestry wrangled an assignment to join an American news junket to Norway for the purpose of publicising new Norwegian Industrial/Tourism programs. The journalist's wife insisted upon joining the junket.

As I said above, the journalists was an Uncle of our hostess, and knew her Norwegian husband well from their college days at UWM.

Well the journalist couple were so enamored with everything Norwegian, especially everything about boats, that they changed their budding plans to purchase a vacation cottage in N Wisconsin and arranged to buy a wooden diesel-oowered motor cruiser which was custom-built for them by a small boatbuilder family in a remote North Sea village in Norway.

The book mainly details twenty years of cruising vacations for which the couple would fly to Norway and cruise for the summer. Eventually they saw most of the waters touching N Europe and England. Their vessel, the VELKOMMEN HJEM, never saw US waters. She was stored in Norway or some other European facility each winter.

The humor expressed through the book, with husband and wife (also a journalist) writing alternate chapters is a fun read.

They embark out in the Fiords of western Norway knowing nothing of Norwegian language, nothing about boats, and nothing about navigation. However, they learn quickly

Moby Nick

Bruce Hooke
08-23-2009, 09:25 AM
Sounds like a good story!

Also sounds like a great way to spend summers...exploring the coastline of northern Europe!

08-23-2009, 09:38 AM
try: "Sailing alone around the world" by Joshua Slocum, if you like this kind of nautical journaling. Its about 200 years old, and still very fresh.

Nicholas Scheuer
08-23-2009, 09:52 AM
I had to leave quickly without really finishing my earlier post.

The couple may have embarked as novices, but quickly became competent, then progressed to expert navigators and pilots. The female author became the primary pilot "I'm driving", while her husband became the primary navigator.

Their vessel, Velkommen Hjem, was a 26-ft wooden double-ender, finished bright, typical of the west coast of Norway, powered by a one-cyl Sabb diesel.

The female author resides in Wisconsin. While the Norwegian publication "was not very ssuccessful" in the words of our host (one who assisted with various aspects of their cruising adventures) I can't help by think that the humor alone expressed throughout thei yarn might find a ready audience in the US if republished in English.

The original test was actually translated twice. The first was translated a "professional" who nothing about anything nautical, nor could she translate the humor. The second translation was done by our host, a fellow who has known the authors since his college days at UWM.

When I'm finished I'm going to write the surviving author and tell her how much I've enjoyed Velkommen Hjem.

Moby Nick

Moby Nick

Bruce Hooke
08-23-2009, 01:03 PM
BTW...as you probably know, Nick, but others may not, I believe the name of the boat translates as "Welcome Home."

Jim Bow
08-23-2009, 01:43 PM
You brought back memories of a book I read in my early teens, "Half Safe: Across the Atlantic in an Amphibious Jeep" by Ben Carlin. I'd love to find a copy nowadays, but they are in the "collectible" price range.

Nicholas Scheuer
08-23-2009, 05:17 PM
Right, Bruce!

It has to do with the owners' Norwegian ancestry.

Moby Nick