Yesterday I decided to take a tour down to the docks and caught up with a British couple who have been sailing the world since February. They made their way from the United Kingdom to Spain and have made many other stops before reaching our shores.
The name on their yacht caught my attention as I approached them. It was Dream Catcher.
Martin and Margaret Rutt come from Worthing, a large seaside town in England.
Martin said their trip to Rarotonga was special because they had their own reason to visit.
“One of the reasons why we have come here is because my wife’s sister used to be here and got married to Dr John Beswick who was a physics teacher at the Tereora College in 1977. They stayed here for about two years,” said Martin.
“This was a must do for us as we reached Rarotonga and we have been receiving calls from home regarding the places they used to be in and the school they taught at,” he said.
The couple had two crew members - Alex and Gonzalo - who they picked up in Tahiti for the voyage to New Zealand.
The Dream Catcher berthed on our shores on Ui Ariki Day. The new arrivals felt bad when they heard about the public holiday and thought every shop would be closed.
Then they were amazed at the special celebration of Ui Ariki.
“It was an absolutely amazing day for us. We came in just in time to witness one of the greatest [aspects of] Cook Islands culture and it was really wonderful,” said Margaret.
“We even went on a hike across the island. We were supposed to go on a scooter ride around the island but … the weather wasn’t that favourable to us,” she said.
Martin used to work as an accountant while Margaret was a teacher. Upon retiring they opened up a small village shop and a post office.
They managed both businesses for about five years till about two years ago when they decided to buy the Dream Catcher and go sailing.
“We love the life of sailing and with our property back home rented out, this is our life.
“Sailing is marvellous, there is always something to be done and the thing is really either you get it or you don’t. Typically, people like golf much better than sailing. It’s 24 hours a day and seven days a week of work.
“It’s a mind-set and how you see sailing.
“Everything that happens is just another experience, another challenge and something you need to think through and, personally, I find this as an experience which is exciting and fun,” said Martin.
The Dream Catcher set sail today for Palmerston where the crew will visit Bill Marsters before continuing their way to Niue, Tonga, Fiji and a stopover in Australia.
There they will wait out the cyclone season before they continue towards South Africa then back home to the United Kingdom.