Meet Tom

Meet Tom

The crew had diminished to just Lucka and I and we enjoyed the slower pace for a few days on our trip to Ha’ aipi and other places. With a 4 day passage coming up we considered a third person but none were forthcoming so the idea was dropped.

Then I got an e mail from a friend of my new friend, Amecia, a wandering Brit who owns a wonderful native art shop. Tom introduced himself as:

Hi Brian

I hope this finds you well and enjoying your time in the Friendly Islands.

My name is Tom I am a 22 year old from Wellington, New Zealand. I have been in Vava’u for just over a week now and am loving it as I am sure you can understand. While I was wandering around I got talking to Amesia at the south sea treasures store. She put me on to you saying that you might be looking for a crew member. I have my boat masters ticket, STCW 95 first aid, BOSIET offshore safety training along with many other practiacal skills. In fact I did a 3 month course in Nelson NZ called superyacht crew. I am an enthusiastic, fun loving, guitar playing guy with a huge passion for the ocean and it’s inhabitants. I have just finished up a year working at Whale Watch Kaikoura.

If you are looking for a crew member I will be in Vava’u for another week and am very keen to join you on your journey (your blog sounds like you are having a great time)!

I look forward to hearing from you.


Tom Southall

So I began my search for this chap. Now finding a tall skinny red head in Tonga is not that hard—and we rendezvoused for a chat. I instantly liked him and so did Lucka so onboard he came.

It was clear to see that we had made a good match, his Kiwi personality, common sense and eagerness to learn mixed well. He is another young—22—person who loves 60’s rock! That and a fellow guitar player- cannot go wrong. We have now done the anchor, buoy, dinghy rituals and a long passage; he has done a great job on all and is a pleasure to have on board.

Tom is another of the fine young people “hitchhiking” around the South Pacific. As I have said before, this is one facet of cruising I did not expect and have gained great joy from participating. Tom is the 30th crew on Furthur since I left Seattle. Since leaving Mexico there has only been one—and oh so great a one—Rita—crew that I knew in Seattle all the rest I met along the way. Most have been under 30 and most have come from countries outside the USA. I would encourage anyone partaking on this voyage to consider picking up extra crew, you will be enriched by the experience and it sure makes those long passages easy having more people on board.

I would also encourage any young person who feels the call of the sea to get some basic experience sailing and to go to the various crew finder sites. Also just go to where cruisers meet, San Diego, Panama, Puerto Vallarta, Papeete, Tonga and cast your fate to the wind.

Obviously some caution must be used but I have only heard of one really bad experience where captain and crew had unresolved issues and dozens of great ones from boat owners and crew. Make sure all details are discussed before casting off—expense sharing, expectations by both parties and do’s and don’ts of the boat. Compatibility is the major element so make sure both parties feel good about the mix. I suggest a “test ride” of a short trip for any new crew, so both can determine suitability. With the simplest of precautions this can take your South Seas adventure to another level.