Pirate Monkey: Braca Tai, born October 2011, started cruising at five months and has spent the majority of his nine years on the sea. He has transited three oceans, crossed the equator five times and has sailed over 35,000 miles onboard Atea. He is now a speedy dinghy driver, a great night watch companion, a dragon slayer and the most imaginative boy you’ll meet. Don’t offer to challenge him to a lego competition; you are sure to be beat.
Click here for a short video introduction to Braca’s daring feats of bravery and survival against unfortunate circumstance.
Braca’s account of his travels: Hello. My name is Braca and I am nine years old. I am sailing around the world with my parents and my sister, Ayla. I was born in New Zealand on 17/10/2011 and lived on my boat, Atea, since the very first day I was brought home from the hospital. At five months old I did my first ocean passage, sailing 1,100 miles from Auckland to Vanuatu. I don’t remember anything about that trip because I was too young.
My best memory of the ocean was when we had a pod of False Killer Whales swim under our boat. That was really special. When I was four we sailed to Chagos and I got to swim with black tip reef sharks and saw some amazing coral reefs and fish. When I was five I got to swim with manta alone with my family in the Maldives. I remember swimming so close I could have touched them, but I left them alone to swim around me.
I have celebrated all my birthdays on the boat, except for two. My very first birthday we had a party on the boat and we had 22 people over, and my very first birthday present was a bottle of wine! I don’t think my parents saved it for me.
In general, I like the boat life. Some of my favourite things about living on my boat is that when we get into harbour we can do our homework and then go ashore and make some friends. I find it easy to make friends; I like to invite my new friends over to our boat and show them my lego toys.
I like to meet people so I have someone to play with all the time, but I don’t like to say goodbye.
Another thing I like about living on my boat is that we get to swim in the ocean every day. Usually, we swim off the boat before school in the morning and go to the beach in the afternoon. I like that I get to travel to different countries; so far my favourite countries are Chagos and the Caribbean. These two are my favourite because they are the warmest and they have nice clear water and beaches to play on.
My new favourite hobby is driving the dinghy around. I have picked up my family on my own several times and can visit other boats without my parents having to drive me. When I am driving, I love it because I get a lot of fresh wind in my face and you can feel the power of the motor when you go on the plane. I love driving! This is super cool because I wouldn’t be able to drive on my own to visit my friends in a car.
This is a school assignment. My teacher has asked me to start writing a journal and we are going to make this a blog so that I can keep in touch with my friends and share all the wonderful things I am seeing and doing. I hope you enjoy my stories.
Stories by Country: