Firstly, let’s make this very clear: FTB is NOT just about Liz and Jamie’s sailing exploits. What started off as a sailing log has evolved into a series of insightful observations of people and places, represented through words, recordings and pictures. This is why many of our readers are not sailors. There’s nothing more boring than listening to a sailor’s yarn; it’s like the fish that got away. We consciously avoid sailing terminology and, when we do, we try to explain it in lay-man’s terms. In short, Followtheboat is a travelogue.
The web site started as a number of essays written by myself as I began my sailing career a few years ago. They were compiled by my brother, Tim, who put them together as a website for friends and family to visit in order to keep up to date with my adventures as I progressed from the UK, across the Atlantic, to the Caribbean. As I emailed Tim my accounts, along with accompanying photographs, so the website grew.
After Liz and I met in Antigua and our plans for a future life at sea evolved, so did the website. Liz became a contributor and the website was revamped in order to account for our adventures on our own boat, Esper, an Oyster 435.
Followtheboat is in its ninth year. It is one of the largest and longest-running sailing blogs on the net. It evolves not just with the latest internet technology but with our experiences too. It has always documented both funny and serious stories, but the emphasis has recently shifted towards photography and podcasting. The writing is not taking a back-seat, however, as we continue to explore new avenues for our written observations.
LATEST DESIGN INCARNATION
You are now viewing the seventh design, nicknamed ‘Purple’. “But there is no purple in it!”, I hear you exclaim. Well, it’s called ‘purple’ because it is based upon the OMGUbuntu theme. OMGUbuntu is a news service for the Linux Ubuntu operating system, and you can find out more about the design in the Thanks page. Not wanting to completely copy the format, we made a few tweaks. Indeed, the raw code for the OMGUbuntu theme merely provided the basics and there was quite a bit coding to add to make it what it is today.
We chose this theme because it opens up a lot of our content which was previously hidden. Categories and posts from yesteryear were being lost in the continually expanding website so we’ve grouped together similar categories and made them more accessible. Also the design makes it easier for us to upload stories. We put a lot of effort into our content, from the stories to the photography, and adding it to WordPress was becoming a chore. This new version makes it easier for everyone all round and we’re pretty happy with the results. We hope you are too.
Please feel free to browse and share our experiences with us.