Soulucean friends and family, meet Rachel Moore and Agape! Agape is both the name of Rachel’s sailboat and this new special edition Soulucean clutch! Rachel and her husband Josh are a super inspiring couple that are sailing around the world. They are currently in one of our favorite places on the planet, French Polynesia, so we teamed up to bring you this special edition as an inspirational postcard from paradise!
Scroll down to see more photos from paradise and to read our interview with Rachel...
You and Josh saved and planned for 6 years before setting sail on Agápē. Now looking back, what was the most important thing you did to prepare yourself for such an epic journey and lifestyle change?
Rachel: Before leaving we did all the typical things you’d expect, we saved money, worked hard, and downsized a lot. The most important preparations we made were not to the boat or to our bank account, but was the work we put into our relationship. We worked hard to foster a healthy partnership, not just as lovers and friends, but also as coworkers and teammates. We made sure that both of us felt appreciated and valued. We no longer let ourselves be defined by “blue jobs” or “pink jobs”, or who did what. We are equals in everything that we do. Instead of calling each other out on our short comings, we try and lift each other up and call each other higher. On Agape, it is often just the two of us (and our cat Gilly) so we’ve had to live, work and practice a communication style that emphases each other, and works to strengthen our little team of two.
What is a typical day like for you?
One thing we love about our lifestyle is that no days are typical, they are all different and enjoyable in their own way. But for us, our days have their foundations laid, like most you, in a good cup of coffee!!! The big difference in our morning ritual is that we have time. Time to wait for kettle to whistle and the coffee grounds in the press to steep. We have the time to sit and watch the waves, or get lost in a good book while we enjoy our morning. We have no such thing as a “typical day” as the time markers that once ruled over our lives and defined our days have vanished. We no longer have a work week, lunch break or even alarms set. Instead the common thread that intertwines our days is that we usually strive to do only one thing a day. That might sound crazy, but after years of feeling the incessant need to be busy, it’s taken us years to unlearn that constant feeling of needing to work, do and see more. Slowing down was uncomfortable at first but we’ve come to truly enjoy our slower paced days. Somedays we might spend all day working on a simple project, but with limited resources in remote destinations, it could end up taking days or weeks to finish. Simple tasks like grocery shopping, laundry or getting fuel can take up the better part of a day. Letting the value of time slip and fade away has allowed us to appreciate each day for what it is. Sometimes it’s a day spent hiking or diving, somedays it’s repairing the engine or polishing stainless, either way we fully give ourselves to each task or activity. The freedom from rushing has been revolutionary to our mental health and our level of contentment.
This year, people all around the world have been learning to deal with things that have always been common challenges to couples living together on a sailboat (and the flip side to the romantic dream of sailing away): distance from friends, family, and communities, the challenges of working and living at home in what starts to feel like “confined space”, and the stress of needing to be as self sufficient a possible for your own health and safety. Have you and Josh experienced any of this, and if so what helped you stay focused and positive?
Absolutely, these are all challenges we have faced over the last four years. It’s easy to focus on what you don’t have or what you’ve lost or given up. Focusing on gratitude takes a bit more work, but it’s something we practice everyday. Instead of focusing on what we don’t have we intentionally choose to meditate on what we are thankful to have.
The translation of Agápē is love, in the verb form. How has this related to the journey that you and Josh are on?
We chose the name Agápē as an intentional reminder of how we want to live our lives, and how we want to interact with each other and the people that we meet along the way. When we first left, we worked with different children’s homes and orphanages to help meet their needs in whatever capacity we were able to contribute. This was often through the donation of even the most basic of food staples and toiletries, and spending time to help, hold, and interact with the children. We would try and show an Agape love, self sacrificing, with no expectations in return. It has evolved into a way of life that we try to live out everyday with the people that we meet. We don’t have much living in such a small space, but often just giving of our time and energy is enough. Here in French Polynesia we found an organization that helps to restore the coral reef around Mo’orea and raise awareness about the decline in our planets coral reefs. We’ve spent some time helping them plant corals while we are here.
When you live on a boat and spend as much time around beaches and water as you, I’m sure a Soulucean clutch comes in handy! We’re curious, what do you keep in your Soulucean clutch?
It’s an incredibly useful bag for the lifestyle I live. To get around we take our dinghy, and inevitably I get wet from the splashes of the wake or sometimes even soaked by wind waves, but the Soulucean clutch keeps my stuff dry. I always carry sunscreen, lip balm, a bikini and cover up, and usually my phone or camera. From adventure days, to nights out on the town it’s the perfect bag!