Sailing on the winds of a dream. "People are much more fun than museums." That's really not to commit any blasphemy against the museums of this earth, great as they are. But it sums up in one short sentence just why a former Medinan, experienced civil engineer, father of ten daughters, would slice two years out of the center of his life and - as they say - "chuck it all" for the wanderlust life of a seafaring traveler. Why he would become head of a six-person family group making its way across the Atlantic, wandering the heaths and hedges of England, entering the Dutch canal system, lazily wandering through the French wine country to the Mediterranean, crossing to Malta for an end-of-year docking. J. Thomas Forrestel, native of Akron, NY, long-time resident of Shelby Center, turned this corner in life with a firm decision: "I knew if I was ever going to do it, it would have to be now." At 49, Forrestel just felt that way - and that was the way it was going to be. There are hardly any among the great legion of working people who spend eight hours a day at desk or machine, who have not silently wished, in a "Walter Mitty" moment, for some refreshment in their routine - a total change. Be a beach bum? Join the pro golf tour? Shoot the Colorado rapids? Live by a cool lake in northern Canada in a spot far from the real world? This odyssey of Mr. Forrestel and half his immediate family was really not the product of some magic wand which suddenly transported him from reality to the open sea. Far from it. It began when he was a boy of less than a half dozen years. "I spent the first 15 summers of my life on lakes," Forrestel told a Journal-Register interviewer. "My father taught us to sail as little kids with a catboat on Loon Lake (near Hornell). " For Tom Forrestel the boating interest was later transferred to ownership of two 16-foot day sailing boats of the snipe class. In 1963, he and his shipmate wife, Jo Payjack Forrestel, got their
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An American Thread: A Sailing Family's Adventure based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
An American Thread by Tom and Jo Forrestel. The true story of his amazing dream, to sail across the Atlantic, and their incredible 2 year sailing adventure to follow that dream. Set sail in 1972 with American's Jo and Tom, their 10 daughters and some friends as they begin the journey. In 1976 sail on a 51 foot long 15 foot wide sailboat named Liberty from New York to Florida to the islands and finally across the Atlantic to England Go on to Paris, the Mediterranean, and the eventual return to Florida. The journey begins with preparation; from buying the sailboat, taking sailing courses, to provisioning, figuring out schooling for the children on board and practice sails. Share the dream, sense their love, visit beautiful places and meet interesting people who touch their lives and become part of their thread of destiny. Face problems, adventures and misadventures along the way. Experience hurricanes, failed equipment, lost children and dealing with Customs and Immigration officials and you begin to understand why Jo said "sailing is magical and terrifying." The hand-drawn maps and family pictures add to the story as you follow Tom's journal about the trip. I found the book to be readable, interesting and entertaining. It made me curious about all the places they visited, the people they met and better understand when Tom was asked: "Now, exactly why did you make the decision to do this?' He answered: Curiosity. If you like to read true stories of people doing incredible things and living life with adventure and a positive tone you will enjoy this book.