The Crew

An adventure to visit all countries and territories around the Portuguese-speaking world, on a sailing boat, with a crew consisting of a couple, their daughter and pet dog, to celebrate the five centuries since the Portuguese navigators connected Europe to Asia by sea.
Nine countries and territories with Portuguese as official language with departure date scheduled for January 2014 in the Dominican Republic.
The route will include the city of Malacca in Malaysia, Goa, Daman and Diu in India, Mozambique, Angola, Sao Tome and Principe, Guinea-Bissau, Cape Verde, Portugal, Brazil, East Timor and Macau, China, among many others.
At the same time we intent to celebrate the 500 years of the biggest achievement of the Portuguese sailors, we also want to promote the good relations between people around the world and to foment cultural exchanges.
We will be taking part also in the scientific initiative Secchi Disk Project. A research project to study the plankton worldwide that started in February 2013 under the leadership of the University of Plymouth in the United Kingdom.
At the end of the project we plan to publish a book with the experiences along the way and an organize an exhibition to showcase our experiences alongside a video about the Portuguese language, based on an excerpt from a text of the famous Macanese writer, Henrique de Senna Fernandes. It’s also being planned a video travel diary for later broadcast in television channels and the publication of articles in newspapers and magazines on a regular basis.

João, born on the 21st of August 1973, Portuguese from a small town near the sea, Mira in Coimbra region. Living in Macau since 1997 and working for Macau Government since it left Portuguese administration, he’s a journalist by academic background and passion. His dream is to sail around the world to see, enjoy and love the nature while still has strength and good health. Since he was young he been nurturing this dream and the sailing passion which had the chance to really develop when he moved to Macau. His first experience of sailing it probably comes from the Portuguese blood like Vasco da Gama, one of the firsts Portuguese who came across the Cape of Good Hope and arrived in Goa, India, in 15th Century. João it’s a United States Surveyors Association member… And hold a Macau Government Boating license. Skipper João!

Kumploy (friends call her NaE), born on the 16th of November 1981, originally Thai from the big city of Bangkok, but living with João in Macau and working in the hospitality and education fields. Her goal is to support her husband and stand by him. She enjoys outdoor activities and loves the sun. It’s her perfect time to set sail with her charming prince and run away with him. Her connection to the water and see was no more than the sporadic visit to the beach or the swimming pool, however, she been the soul and strength behind the entire project always giving support. Her lack of experience with water is compensated with passion, strong character and a never give up personality.

How did they met?
Many of you may wonder, Thai and Portuguese, why live and work in Macau with their S/V Dee registered in USA… Passionate about Thailand, João is familiar with Thai environment, nature, culture and people. But NaE had no idea that Portuguese were the first Western arriving in her country! However odd, they met in Hong Kong while NaE was travelling to meet her friends. Skipper João, with his charm, kindness and lovely character, hooked NaE immediately and they keep a long distance relationship for a while before they decided to get married in Macau. After that NaE moved to Macau to start a couple life. Our new HOME, sailing vessel (S/V) Dee it’s sitting in Dominican Republic but it’s an American build Gulfstar 45 Hirsch, registered in Delaware, USA. João and NaE are the third owners and decided to change her name after their lovely daughter. S/V Dee was previously called Red Wine and Carrie Okies. She is the perfect new house for the Gomes’s family.

Noël, born on 25th of December 2009, a lovely French Bulldog. When we bought it, was told to us that he came from Taiwan and arrived in Macau via Hong Kong. A French that never saw France! His name was chosen due to his birthday, Christmas Day. He’s a real Papa Noël!  Loves exercise and outside activities, even if usually it’s too hot and he suffers to breath, due to his short nose and difficulty to adapt to high temperatures. He had his first experience of sailing is with João and NaE in 2011 when he was 2 years old. He loved the experience and to see when another boats passed by like, always keeping a sharp eye on them and following from bow to stern like we wants to say Hi. Well behave and well trained he is always a big hit wherever he goes… He will be the official guard in our new home and the deck cleaner…

Maria Dee, born on the 7th of January 2013, is the Dragon Princess. Mixed Portuguese and Thai, born in Macau. For the sake of the Chinese believe on the ages old Chinese lunar calendar, João and NaE were trying to have a baby in the Dragon year believing it would bring Luck, however they had given up on it and start feeling that they would be unable to conceive a baby, however, when they weren't thinking about it anymore, there she comes, Dragon Princess! Her name is mixed Portuguese and Thai. João and NaE tried to choose a name that would be easy for the grandparents to pronounce. Maria, was chosen by João and NaE after João’s mother who is very excited with her third grandchild. Dee, means Good in Thai, and coincidentally has the same sound of NaE’s adoptive mother, who passed away several years. Maria Dee first experience of sailing was when she had 4 months. She was calm and in good mood all the time and with a big appetite during her first experience. Her first reaction when her mother put her a cable in the hand was to bring it to the mouth to taste! A Maria “forced” to postpone this adventure by one year… She’s Portuguese by nationality, luso-thai by blood and Macanese by birth place…