Finale! Unconventional wisdoms, 4/4: Dini Martinez (& the Sailing Yoga Family)

Dini I met Dini aboard her family’s home and sailing vessel “Happy Dancer” to find out more about how this young mother managed to sail, travel, have a career, a family and keep everything afloat, literally.

It was a hot and sunny but breezy September afternoon. We sat up on the deck in shade, our children played quietly below.  It was peaceful and the air fresh and salty.  Dini cut us up a winner of a Maltese watermelon and I felt I would need convincing not to sell all my belongings and buy a boat after this interview.

Dini is 31, an Australian who has travelled a lot (10 countries in her first 18 years) and whenever by the sea she worked on boats. Dini began teaching Yoga at 25, then met and married Pablo Martinez an accountant whom she ‘trained up’ in sailing skills by buying a share in a boat docked in Sydney harbour with a dream one day of setting sail in their own. They have two sons: Noah 4 and Gael 2.5 years (at time of interview).

 

Me (M): The first question I must ask Dini, is, why this lifestyle choice, and why now?

Dini: (D): I have always sailed.  Since I could walk, my grandfather taught me.  I have always been adventurous. My original plan was to buy a really old boat with friends and do it up.  For me it was always an idea centring on community.  No one else at that time seemed ‘on board’ with this plan so eventually I found myself married with an 18-month old son and another on the way.  All our friends were getting mortgages and we just didn’t feel ready for that yet.  We wanted to make our own little world and be cut off from some of the things we liked less about western lifestyles.

When I found I was pregnant with Gael we felt the time was right.  Before that we were worried our older son Noah might feel lonely if we travelled but now our family felt complete we knew it was time.  We sold many of our belongings and gave away the rest.  This wasn’t challenging for us, it felt very liberating.

We chose Happy Dancer because of Moody (the brand’s) good reputation as a safe but also comfortable blue water cruiser.  It’s built stronger than most boats, that was the important thing.  The fact that it was already equipped with solar panels and wind generator was a plus.

(more…)

Read More

Unconventional wisdoms interview, part 3 of 4: Patrick Sweeney

Patrick Sweeney Running Chicago marathon’s a noble achievement.

Running New York marathon in the same year, a life time achievement maybe…

Running both and the distance between the two?  

Patrick Sweeney reckons pretty much any of us can do this.  It’s just a matter of getting into the rhythm of things.

Me (M)- What are you up to tomorrow?

Patrick (P)- Tomorrow I’ll be flying to Chicago to meet with a friend “Barefoot Alex” then onto the Kenyan Embassy to meet some top Kenyan marathoners.  Alex and I’ll then pick up a torch and run from Chicago to New York and then run the New York Marathon.

(more…)

Read More

Endless Possibilities (2nd half of Unconventional Wisdoms Series)

Sailing Dini & sunset mudra :)
Dini, sailing & sunset mudra :)

After a short break in the series, I have subtitled the remaining two interviews this way, as I wish to convey the under-exploited potential of the human race.

 

Several years ago, my university friend drew my attention to the fact that many of our contemporaries were living in “self-created prisons”.   Luckily, I had already found running as a way of breaking free from the library, or life at my desk, but I understood what she meant.

At a time when we should have been enjoying limitless freedoms, people were living in boxes: a whole world where opportunities outside their windows were left untouched and unexplored, whilst hours were whiled away watching escapist TV, playing on games consoles, or just generally making every effort possible to disengage from the wider world. This habit only worsened as jobs and families became the norm for that generation.  

The notion of adventure seemed too much of an exertion for an already burned-out mind… No wonder the rate of mental illness seemed so disproportionately high… We thought we were happy in our bubbles, but we were scared to break-out of the comfort zone, and that’s a different thing entirely.

The following two interviews taught me that the life of your dreams is possible in the here and now (and here’s the cool bit for me) even with a couple of kids in tow :)  In fact, setting examples for next generations: that we don’t have to live a life of optional limitation, is pretty much a purposeful existence in and of itself.

It doesn’t have to be all rat race and rush hours, it can be sunsets, beer miles and saying “Yes” to opportunities…

Meet Dini Martinez and Patrick Sweeney! Patrick’s interview, regarding his adventure starting tomorrow, will be up later today, so check back for that :)

Patrick (and some random shirtless guy)

 

Read More