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Mike, Fiori, and a Universe-Conspired Voyage: Romania Beckons

You might recall I shared about the mad dash in hunting for a boat and the whole escapade of getting to Romania during the height of Covid-19. But, believe it or not, there’s a bit more spice to that tale.

Here’s the funny bit: I genuinely had no idea how to sail! I mean, I tried to get ahead by enrolling in a Skippers Course, but just when things started rolling, Covid played spoiler and paused it after a mere 4 hours. Typical, right?

Now, not knowing my way around a boat wasn’t the end of the road for me. As Henry Ford wisely put it: “I don’t need to know everything; I just need to know where to find it.” Armed with that mantra, I began searching for solutions. My trusty friend, Mike Tlalka, pointed out the apparent— I needed an experienced skipper to accompany me from Romania to Dubai. Sounds straightforward? Well, not quite. Getting a skipper ready for this “unique” journey was like finding gold. Mike and I tapped into every contact we had. Most brushed it off, with a few labeling it a “Mission Impossible.” One chap even quipped, “That’s almost impossible…but if you make it, I want to know all the details!”

But as fate would have it, someone got wind of our quest. He introduced us to Fiori, a seasoned skipper with over a decade of experience in the Greek waters. And the best part? He was game!

With Fiori now part of the crew, it was go-time in Romania. I touched down a fortnight before Fiori and Mike. And speaking of Mike, I truly believe he’s like an angel sent by the Universe to guide and protect me on this journey. He wasn’t just there for the skipper hunt; he took on all the planning and logistics. Honestly, I can’t even begin to imagine navigating this adventure without his unwavering support.

Amidst the Covid chaos, I set out to get the BVI flag for the boat. After a bit of back and forth, I secured a “Temporary Provisioning” that would buy me three months.

Now, here’s a smart move I pulled off: The authorities were after a notarised bill for the boat, which was rather costly. So, I had a brainwave—get the bill in Romanian, translate it to English, have THAT notarised, and it set me back only 50 EURO!

Smooth, right?

Just when I thought we were sailing smoothly, a few more twists awaited. But let’s save that for the next episode, shall we?

Stay with me!