Maitairoa - A boat and a friendship

Roberto e Eileen Barros
Thirty years ago the double-ender Maitairoa left her building shed placed in a country seat located in the one thousand meters high hills north of Rio de Janeiro to start an adventurous career. After passing through various thrilling experiences during the ten years of intensive usage, in the South Atlantic and the Austral Ocean, when she belonged to the Barros family, the boat change hands, and changed hands again, ending up with the Argentinean Sandra Sauto, a good friend of ours who always nurtured an interest in owning her. Soon after the acquisition Sandra sailed to the Caribbean with her newly acquired cruising machine, and from there sailed bound for the Mediterranean, where she lives aboard with her family, having the boat stationed in a marina in the French Riviera.

Sandra and her two kids, Calypso and Sanson (left in the photo), enjoying a holiday in Paris. Photo: Sandra Sautu

Even being far distant from each other, we keep in regular contact, especially at season’s greetings time, when we update our stories. This year she told us she spent a fortnight in Paris, as host of a friend she met in Stockholm, who also has children of about the age of Sandra’s sons.

Notwithstanding, the spirit of Christmas aboard Maitairoa was as alive as ever, with Christmas tree decorating the cabin, while a harness of coloured led lights hoisted in the rigging completed the atmosphere of season’s greetings.

Sandra’s kids were raised aboard Maitairoa, what enhances the history of the boat as a sheltering floating home. Thirty years earlier our daughter Astrid enjoyed living aboard too. Photo: Sandra Sautu

Maitairoa looks as good as when she was launched, probably even better with the supper-care received from Sandra, while the two families’ friendship is also as good as ever. The lesson we take from this experience is that a boat and a friendship can last for a lifetime.