Philippe Guglielmetti departed Miami on May 28, bound for what was intended to be an extraordinary double ocean crossing journey. It’s not as though Guglielmetti needs to prove his mettle. The Nordhavn 40 owner has been proving his strength since he suffered a debilitating stroke six years ago that sent him to a wheelchair with limited mobility. But Guglielmetti’s can-do adventurous attitude is a huge reason he’s been able to achieve milestone physical events that have astounded his doctors. Crossing the ocean in his own boat was the latest goal for Guglielmetti. He had hoped to go from Miami to Lisbon, Portugal and then return across either back to Miami or New York.
Unfortunately, the crew of Embracing Life have been met with some misfortune. They were just about half-way through the 2nd leg of their trip when the boat lost its mast and paravanes and then a day later got line caught in the prop causing it to seize and lose propulsion. The Nordhavn 40 bobbed at sea aimlessly for 2 ½ days before one of Guglielmetti’s sons was able to free the prop and get them back on course. Meanwhile, back in Miami, Florence Guglielmetti maintained communication with her husband via SAT phone, while keeping a lifeline with Nordhavn’s SE sales manager Garrett Severen who advised her how the crew should proceed. Severen also put Guglielmetti in touch with two Nordhavns, the 60-foot Carmanah and 57-foot Festus who were just in front of him en route to The Azores. Both boats monitored the N40’s progress the entire time. Stunningly, Guglielmetti remained positive and never missed a daily report on his web log despite the difficult conditions.
When Embracing Life pulled in to Horta two weeks ago, they were met by Capt. Nikolas and owner Sean off of Carmanah who jumped aboard to help bring them in for the final finish of Leg Two. In Horta came the arrival of new crew while Guglielmetti had a much needed rest and fleshed out a revised plan. They’re currently back on the high seas and – instead of heading to Lisbon – the boat will divert to a marina in Tarragonna, Spain, in hopes it can be loaded on to a ship to be transported back to Miami. It’s not the voyage he initially envisioned but when it’s done, he will still have achieved what he set out to do – and then some. Most cruisers will probably argue that crossing the ocean one time without stabilization is a lot more difficult than crossing back-to-back in comfort. Embracing Life is on pace to arrive in Spain on Wednesday.
Follow Philippe Guglielmetti as he makes his way across the Atlantic Ocean at philcrossing.com