The Motion of the Ocean
1 Small Boat, 2 Average Lovers, and a Woman's Search for the Meaning of Wife
By Janna Cawrse Esarey
(Touchstone, Paperback, 9781416589082, 336pp.)
Publication Date: June 2, 2009
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The humorous true story of a woman who abandons her tidy life to honeymoon across the Pacific on a leaky, old boat—only to find that sailing 17,000 miles is easier than keeping her relationship off the rocks.
“Somewhere fifty miles off the coast of oregon i realize the skipper of this very small ship is an asshole. he also happens to be my husband.”
While most thirty-somethings are climbing the corporate ladder or popping out babies, Janna Cawrse and her boyfriend Graeme take a different tack: they quit their jobs, tie the knot, and embark on a most unusual honeymoon cruise—813 days across the Pacific Ocean on a beat-up old sailboat. Their goal? Relaxation and relationship therapy. But the passage from First Date to First Mate is anything but smooth sailing. From the craggy Pacific Northwest coast to the tropical isles of Polynesia to the bustling ports of Asia, Janna and Graeme must share everything: rations of Top Ramen, sailboat sewage duty, a boat the size of a bedroom, and every minute of every day. They realize: If their marriage can survive this, it can survive anything! Like all great love stories, Janna and Graeme encounter storms and disasters along the way…and plenty of reasons for make-up sex. And they discover intimate secrets about each other, difficult truths about love, and skills they’ll need to keep their boat—and their relationship—afloat. Written in the style of popular travelogues by J. Maarten Troost (The Sex Lives of Cannibals) and Elizabeth Gilbert (Eat, Pray, Love), Janna Cawrse Esarey gives readers a satisfying mix of soul-searching and romantic comedy while she seeks to answer this crucial question: When the waters get rough, will she—a novice sailor and spouse—abandon ship? Or will she learn to navigate the world—and the one relationship that will teach her about sex, love, and the meaning of “wife”?
Janna Cawrse Esarey is a 2008 Jack Straw Writing Fellow and contributes to several sailing magazines including Sail and Cruising World. She also writes “Happily Even After,” a relationship blog for the Seattle Post-Intelligencer. She lives in Seattle overlooking her friend and nemesis, the sailboat Dragonfly.
"Equipped with nothing but an old boat and a new marriage, Janna Cawrse Esarey recounts her two and a half years at sea with wry humor, keen observations, and descriptions vivid enough to satisfy even the most seasoned traveler. As Janna and her husband cross the globe, they learn that sometimes relationships are the trickiest waters...yet all storms can be weathered with enough courage and determination. The Motion of the Ocean is the quintessential summer read for anyone seeking an adventure in life, love, or self-discovery." -- Jen Lancaster, author of Bitter is the New Black
"Most of us would love to quit our jobs and sail across the globe, but very few of us have the guts -- or the sea legs. Fortunately for us armchair adventurers, Janna Cawrse Esarey not only took this journey, she took great notes. The result is a funny, honest tale of how one woman found her comfort zone -- with the sea, with herself, and with the notion of happily ever after." -- Michelle Goodman, author of My So-Called Freelance Life and The Anti 9-to-5 Guide
"I didn't think it was possible to write a 'new' cruising yarn. However, Janna Cawrse Esarey has done it -- from a female sailor's perspective. This isn't a story of a cruise; it is an insightfully-written story of a maturing relationship. Best of all, her pen is as sharp as her wit. She pulls no punches. I laughed and cried -- and saw myself on every page." -- Cap'n Fatty Goodlander, Editor-at-Large of Cruising World magazine
"An edgy, unique style and badass sense of humor." -- Tania Aebi, author of Maiden Voyage and the First American Woman and Youngest Person to Sail Around the World Alone
"On her honeymoon Janna Cawrse Esarey and her fisherman husband set sail in pursuit of her childhood dream....Motion of the Ocean is a fresh and honest story on many levels. It's an entertaining read for those who enjoy a voyaging story or are contemplating an adventure, though in the end it's not about achieving the sailing dream -- it's a love story in which Janna discovers how to live and enjoy life." -- Amanda Swan Neal and John Neal, authors of The Offshore Crusising Companion