The French Diaries!

The French Diaries: Part 13. “The Big Decision!”


Edouard and I have made a decision that we would like to share with you.

We have been feeling restless. Restless for something and we didn’t know what. It was strange for us to adapt to this new world of ours, apartment, city life, job, sleep and then repeat. We were with each other so we didn’t care. We were with Edouard’s family that he hadn’t seen for so long and I was visiting England. We were happy.

Are happy.

But the horizon is still out there and I know that this little city life of ours isn’t what we want. When we first moved here everything was wonderful, and we do appreciate what we have here. We live in a great apartment with a bakery across the road. There’s nightlife, restaurants, museums- everything you could wish for after being away from society for so long.

But there was something missing. Something that would make us stare off into the distance as we sat at the table with our coffee or tea in hand, remembering our adventures with our crew.

“It was so amazing when we did this-”

“It was so wonderful when we did that-”

But what now?

We had looked at buying a piece of land in the country and withdrawing from the franticness of city life. We became excited about the prospect of building an eco house or restoring an old building. We spoke about living by the ocean so we could build a small boat and experience the waves, the salt breeze and the sand beneath our feet.

We still spoke of travel often, about where we wanted to go and what we wanted to do. But the idea of finding a “home” was still prevalent.

We want to get out there, live and experience life.

“We can buy the land and still travel!” I would suggest.

Edouard would agree and then we would talk about all the places we wanted to go, the countries we wanted to visit. And the restlessness turned into a sudden unbearable itch.

And as I’m writing this, I can feel an excitement bubble up inside me. I can picture myself in the place I want to be. I’m still so endlessly inspired by Delos. It has become a way of life for me to follow my dreams. And I know now.

It’s time for another adventure.

So, we’ve made a decision.

We’re buying a boat.

Now it sounds very easy to say, and I suppose it is. How can someone like me just go and get myself a boat?

But why don’t I try?

I spend every day talking to you guys, the Tribe about your future aspirations and dreams. I always try and push you guys towards what it is you really want to do. And I realised today that it’s actually pretty difficult to take that leap, isn’t it?

I’m suddenly drawn back to that day when I bought my ticket for Delos. I knew my entire family were against it. Even my friends didn’t think I could sail across the ocean. Maybe I didn’t even believe it. It was a terrifying thing going against the sense of everyone else and to follow my own path. But it became the best thing I ever did.

And I’ve decided I’m doing it again.

And there’s no point in waiting.

I’m not going to wait for four years to do anything. If I want to do something, I’m going to act on it and get everything I can in place. I’m so aware that things change in the future. Time runs out. I don’t want to be in this position. I don’t want to rely on future circumstances. I don’t want to rely on a better time because that hour may never actually come.

I want it to be now.

So me and Edouard have begun searching and researching. We’ve found a few we like already, one of which is a Amel Kirk. As I looked over at it there was a sort of peace that settled in my stomach. I instantly trusted this brand. It was familiar to me. I never even expected to find an Amel, least of all of one in our area in Marseille- which is silly I suppose, seeing that they’re made in just the North of France. But to think that I would even have the opportunity to find one within my meagre budget was surprising. We’ve found a few others that we are keen on as well, including a Maurice Griffiths Atlantic Clipper.

amel kirk

We’re looking for something about 11metres with a liveable space for a couple and another. We haven’t even met that couple yet, but we know when we start cruising it would be fun to do it with other people. There’s a comradery that comes along sailing and exploring and I’m excited to share that with others.

I don’t have the most sailing experience, but after talking to some sailing groups, they all encouraged me to simply go for it. Edouard is more the capable sailor, having experience of an ocean crossing and from sailing around Brittany and England.

I’m nervous at the idea because I know it will be a huge challenge for me. But that’s the beauty of challenges- they make you grow and expand your mind. I feel as though I’m a completely different person of who I was a year ago. I am irreversibly changed by what I have experienced on Delos.

And of course I have turned to them for help. Mr Brady is excited at the prospect of me and Edouard getting out there, and said he expected us to film it too.

Which of course we will.

I’m looking forward to this new chapter, and I intend on making things happen within the next six months.

I am not waiting.

I want to experience what I did with Delos alongside Edouard. I want us to explore new places and travel on adventures together. I want us to get out of the renting rat-race, away from the pollution of the cities and the klaxons of angry drivers. I want to feel the sun on my skin, the waves on my legs and rum in my belly.

Right now, I’ve got the rum.

The world is waiting out there and I need to answer the call.

Our budget, is of course tiny. We’re looking at boat financing options and of course saving as much as we can. But our budget I would say is max 17k euros- if the boat financing company are very nice to us. So I’m working as hard as I can, painting as many commissions as possible, selling my tee shirts on the shop, my books on Amazon, working for my beloved Delos and you guys, of course make my dream that much closer to being possible.

You’ve made me glimpse that little further into reality to hope that I can do this. That this life is achievable. I’ve grown wanting to create and amazing story for myself and I’m getting there bit by bit. But I’ve learned that it mostly happens when I take risks and make choices that push me out of my comfort zone.

So if you guys have any advice, know of any boats- please send them my way!

But I have to do this. I have to.

Because I’ve felt this panic before settling in my gut. It’s the same panic I had when I was living in England. That’s a sign from the Universe telling me to make changes. I started a journey and I thought it was going to lead us here in Marseille forever. Little did I know that actually the adventure is still out there, waiting for us.

Edouard and I have a path before us and we’re ready to start following it.

With you guys.


Want to help? You can help towards our boat fund by donating here! 

You can also help us in this dream by signing up as a Patron. By doing so even for a dollar is a HUGE help. You also get to read early blog entries, extras and videos! Interested? Sign Me Up!

You can also help another way by buying one of my books or visiting my shop of tees and gifts! I hope you like! Much love!

Thank you as always! Lizbef x



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  1. I caution you that buying a boat on a minuscule budget is a risky proposition, as it will likely need repairs or replacements that were not done by the seller, hence the low price. Sure, you both can provide the labor, but materials and parts cost real money. Please, please make sure you have a knowledgeable inspector assess the craft before you buy, The ocean is unforgiving to novice owners,

  2. Better get Brian to help inspect it even over Skype, and when that happens you’ll need a volt meter… 🙂 Great News and keep up the good work.

  3. Lizbef – this is fantastic… I’m still hoping and continually planning my sailing escape… In the meantime – here’s wishing you and Edouard all the best for finding your boat and starting your next adventure…

  4. Legend!
    Couldn’t sea you as a land lubber for long.
    Both of you are do’ers, young, adventureres.
    Ed could go to those places he’s bern before helping those in need, there’s a vlog or 3 to look forward too. Lizbef you are a cool chick with abundent talent to write up these wonderful experiances – from your heart a rare talent and very much a great read.
    So, come on EVERYONE pitch in 50 quid for these two to show us the real world, I did.

  5. This is like reading my mind! We’ve tried to live on land and make it work but we both had this itch that NEEDED to be scratched before ‘life’ took over and we couldn’t! So…Baremka our 34 ft 1974 Dufour was purchased in May 2017 and we have since sailed across the North Sea then down and around the Netherlands, Belgian and French coast to Audierne. We’re currently wintering in Jersey (came back up and around!) waiting to go down the French canals in Spring and into the Med! We should be coming out in Port St Louis I think (not too far from you guys in Marseille!) 😀

    If anything, our 10m is a little on the small side and we both wish it were a little bigger but with bigger comes much larger costs! However…it would be a comfier ride (on the right boat of course!)

    Best of luck with your adventures if we don’t bump into you! 😀

    Fair winds and Following Seas 😉

  6. This was like reading my mind! We’ve tried the land life but both had an itch to travel that just wouldn’t go away so we’ve done the only sane thing possible…scratched that itch! We bought a 1974 Dufour 34 in May 2017, moved aboard (OH straight away whilst I tied up all the lose ends and sold as much as I possibly could before I joined him at the beginning of June!) Since then we have sailed across the North Sea and into the canal system and the Markenmeer then back out and around the coast, past Belgium and then spent time hopping down and around the French coast to Audierne! Thanks to all the hurricanes we came back up to Jersey and are now waiting to head down the French canals to the Med in a few months! We should be coming out at Port St Louis so not far from you guys! 😀

    Take your time picking the best boat for your budget. We had the same ball park figure as you and spent months and months trawling the net ( especially) and drew up a short list before visiting them. That as well as visiting boat shows in previous years! We decided to buy ours because she had spent the previous 15 years or in the Med which is exactly where we want to head! If you can find something that has been well looked after / had upgrades recently then it will hopefully save you money in the near future. If anything…our 10m is a little snug but it does only have a 28ft waterline and one bedroom! We wish we had two bedrooms now for more room and so people can come and stay!

    Best of luck boat hunting and we’ll look out for you in a few months! 😀

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