Pierrick Chouard, a customer, who has VintagePlantations.com, a wonderful chocolate factory in New Jersey, just checked in with his personal email about his boating survival story with his Catalina 36 during Hurricane Sandy as follows:

Pierrick Chouard

Nov 4 (3 days ago)

to me
Here is a description of what I went through. You know I live on my
sailboat in liberty landing marina…

“I made it, I had my friend post on facebook, as my cell worked
until 8 pm that night. The entire story is on my page on facebook. It
has been a bit tough since then as I have no gas, no electricty and I
had to borrow some cash until yesterday when the bank opened. what an
interesting experience. 6 of us stayed on our boat to defend them . We
chained the pontoons with our anchor chains and rode to
buildings,piles on the shore so when the surge came we floated above
the piles securing the pontoons, then the street , but we were not
taken away.
We spent the night check how the boat were tied to the pontoon, I had
to swim to shore to move my car , as the street were flooded, I moved
it in the nick of time. 10 minutes more and itwould have floated away
with the other cars. I parked it on a staircasebackward and it held.
Then, swam back to the boat where the most experiencecircumnavigator
sailor became worried, so I became worried too. we
invited this american girl Joanna to take refuge on his boat. she was
terrified. poor thing. so we started to all drink our best liquor
….. just in case.We saw the marina across: 50 yeards away;
which was not chained to anything get completly destroyed, boat
started to pile up, but our corner resisted. I rowed across with
evans, an irish guy, and tied all fingers of the pontoon to each
other,.. after that I was at wits end on what to do,and I was getting
very very cold and started to take refuge on chris’s salboat, all of
us put on our life jacket as we could barely walk on the pontoons and
we kept on drinking. … there was nothing else to do…. i never
felt really in a desperate situation. I always felt, as long as the
pontoons are not destroyed, we will be okay… the only issue is
…once you feel desperate…it is often too late to escape.”

I wanted to share this with his permission having gutted through harrowing experiences sailing. He says now that the boat is safe he still wants his companionway doors he ordered.

Mike

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