seafarers – 3, Donald Ridler

yself in a dinghy at speed… It was skulled from the stern with a paddle. A ever useful garden hose was put around the gunwale to act as fender. I could take two passengers in calm weather if no one breathed. The two passengers were too scared to breath.


rong hình: tôi đang chèo chiếc xuồng nhỏ, với một mái chèo sau đuôi. Một đoạn ống nước nhựa nhỏ, loại dùng để tưới vườn, bọc quanh bảo vệ thuyền! Tôi có thể chở thêm 2 hành khách nữa, nếu trời êm, và nếu không ai thở! Hai hành khách của tôi quá sợ để thở!

seafarers – 2, Paul Erling Johnson

arry King: I’ve seen your boat, Paul. And I wouldn’t sail it across the Miami River!. Paul replied: And given what I know of your sailing skills, that’s very wise, Larry!


arry King: Tôi xem qua con tàu của anh rồi Paul. Tôi sẽ không dùng nó để đi qua con sông Miami bé nhỏ này đâu!. Paul đáp lại: Theo như tôi biết về kỹ năng đi biển của anh, thì như thế là rất khôn ngoan đấy Larry!

seafarers – 1, Maurice Griffiths

found my pulse beating with suppressed excitement as I threw the mooring buoy overboard. It seemed as if that simple action had severed my connection with the life on shore; that I had thereby cut adrift the ties of convention. The unrealities and illusions of cities and crowds; that I was free now, free to go where I chose, to do and to live and to conquer as I liked, to play the game wherein a man’s qualities count for more than his appearance.


ôi cảm thấy mạch mình đập một niềm vui hăm hở nhưng kìm nén, khi ném sợi dây buộc thuyền cuối cùng lên bờ. Dường như chỉ với một hành động nhỏ như thế, những ràng buộc cuối cùng với đất liền, với các quy ước thông thường đã bị cắt đứt. Tránh xa thành phố, đám đông với những hoang đường, hoang tưởng của nó, giờ đây tôi tự do đi và sống như tôi muốn, một cuộc sống trong đó, giá trị của con người phụ thuộc vào nhiều thứ hơn là chỉ vẻ ngoài của họ!

selfie sticks

asically, there’re two wholly different kinds of selfie stick, as illustrated in the picture below, the one on the left, often dubbed: the landlubbers’, and the one on the right, usually known as: the seafarers’ or simply: ‘the mast’ 🙂 . On the left is way too small, I need something much bigger. Surely one day, I would build myself a huge selfie stick like that on the right! 🙂


boat ramblings

ater is like a woman, and boats are like condoms, the bigger the boat, the thicker the later. It’s not too fun for a man to venture to water in a big yacht, trying to conduct a safer affair, hoping to buy some security, and at the same time, insulating himself from the very intimate pleasures of the water! 🙂 Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to everyone!

set your course

Set your course by the stars, not by the lights of every passing ships!

any moons ago… the internet was booming in Vietnam (let me recall that it was only in the 2000, 2001 years that the Internet gradually became more popular in here, quite late compared to other countries). I’ve just finished college and started a career in software engineering back then. A whole new world, an immense pool of knowledge to be learnt.

Subscribed to lots of news agencies, a ton of discussing groups, various programming and technical forums… before becoming overwhelmed by the amount of information available. Soon, I’d learned to filter out the not – too – good sources, first by ignoring the social, viral websites. There’s really very little salt of truth conveyed by them, the mass media.

Next come RSS, the news feed, which allows me to follow only the very selective persons, topics. My list now contains many hundreds of talented programmers, computer scientists… around the world. While admiring their thinking in many ways, I usually find it cumbersome to browse the huge piles of information to figure out what’s really useful to me.

My thirst for knowledge spans across many domains, so my RSS list has become exceptionally long. Just for examples, my list for boat building contains more than 600 sources, or my list for typewriter exceeds 100… Yes, I love those mechanical typewriters and their fonts. And I have many other technical interests that you probably wouldn’t think of! 🙂

Normally, I would read about 70 ~ 90 new posts every day, that helped developing my quick reading ability. In a sense, I “consume” a huge daily doze of information, and my thirst has not been satisfied yet (or it would ever be), and I find it not too troublesome to continue on that way. But then come a time, I realized the needs to see the things differently.

We are all “producers” and “consumers” in one way or another, even in the particular area of “Information”. Why do we have to consume that much, why don’t just concentrate on things that really matter for our life!? And furthermore, why don’t we transform ourselves from the role of “consumer” into “producer”, producing some very little fine of it!?

Lots of thinking suddenly sparked in my mind, just by the strikingly simple saying quoted on the left: set your course by the stars, not by the lights of every passing ships! Even though they’re giant and luxurious ocean liners (like the Titanic), and you’re only on your tiny bamboo draft, but hey, it’s your life, your ship, your journey and your own course, isn’t it!?

a voyage for mad men

Nhất lộ hào ca, hướng thiên nhai!


‘m reading this extremely fascinating book, A Voyage for Madmen – Peter Nichols: In 1968, nine sailors set off on the most daring race ever held: to single – handedly circumnavigate the globe nonstop. It was a feat that had never been accomplished… Ten months later, only one of the nine men would cross the finish line and earn fame, wealth, and glory. For the others, the rewards were… failure, madness, and death.

Robin Knox – Johnston was the only man to complete and win the competition, on his 32′ Suhaili Bermudan ketch, in a little more than 10 months. But that’s not all the stories still! Another competitor, Bernard Moitessier, could have won, but near the finish, he decided to break out the race attempting to… circumnavigate the globe a second time 🙂 ! His adventures are recounted in another (my next) book: The long way.

It should be noticed that sailing in the 60s is completely different from that of nowadays. No GPS yet, sailors still had to use sextant and chronometer, no auto – pilot system but simple self – steering wind vane, no saltwater desalination, boats need to have large container for fresh water, no satellite phone, the only electronics is the complex, unreliable long range radio, radar and sonar are not yet available for small sailing vessels.

xuân nghệ sĩ hành khúc

Tới sau, ngày tươi vui ấy đã qua, thật không khác với giấc mơ, ngồi nghĩ đến lúc ngây thơ,
Lòng bâng khuâng ta sẽ tiếc thương cho bao nhiêu ngày vui đẹp,
Chúng ta nhủ thầm: ngày vui xưa nay đã mất qua bao lần!

hời gian cuối năm vẫn còn dài, mà sao thấy cứ nôn nao muốn bước sang năm mới… Kỳ thực đời người ta sống, quang âm như bóng câu qua cửa sổ, nói Nôm na thì: “chả lo gì” mà “chỉ lo già”… hoặc phỏng như Lý Bạch: người xưa đốt đuốc chơi đêm, thiệt là có lýcổ nhân bỉnh chúc dạ du, lương hữu dĩ dãtext=古&font=2&size=17&color=555555text=人&font=2&size=17&color=555555text=秉&font=2&size=17&color=555555text=烛&font=2&size=17&color=555555text=夜&font=2&size=17&color=555555text=游&font=2&size=17&color=555555text=良&font=2&size=17&color=555555text=有&font=2&size=17&color=555555text=以&font=2&size=17&color=555555text=也&font=2&size=17&color=555555 🙂 .

Về các anh em nhà Phạm Xuân (nhạc sĩ Xuân Lôi, Xuân Tiên…) đó thật sự là những con người đặc biệt của làng nhạc Việt. Tuy không hâm mộ âm nhạc của họ cho lắm, nhưng lại rất thích những cuộc đời năng động, đầy sức sống, đa tài, đa nghệ, muôn màu muôn vẻ như họ. Một chút âm nhạc sinh động trong không gian gió mùa xuân đương tới.

Xuân nghệ sĩ hành khúc – Thái Thanh

cape of Nghênh Phong

aptured few days ago at cape of Nghênh Phong, Vũng Tàu. White breaking waves everywhere, and winds are extremely violent, true to the name (Nghênh Phong in Vietnamese means: to welcome the wind, well, they’re for sure warmly welcomed there). It’s even hard to hold the phone steadily in one hand. My initial plan has to be postponed to another time! 🙁


Hoành giang từ – kỳ tam – Lý Bạch

Bạch lãng như sơn na khả độ,
Cuồng phong sầu sát tiễu phàm nhân.

Bó tay, sóng núi bạc đầu,
Khách thuyền sốt ruột chết sầu gió điên!