This Toronto Couple Is Sailing The World With Their Dog, Güero

A happily ever after that few venture with a dog in tow

By Justyne Yuen-Lee
 Photos: Wahkuna’s Voyages

Some of us don’t even really think about love or retirement. In my mind, I worry about the next week, what I’m going to eat tonight, and wonder if I’ll ever save enough money to move out. But really, in 30 to 40 years, I’ll be done with building my career and potentially married with children ( ? ?? ? ). There are so many options – do I want to stay in a comfortable retirement area or do I want to travel? Do I want to keep working even though I’m eligible to retire? There are so many questions.

Checking out the sea

Now Robert McCourt and his wife Delphine had the idea to do something different in their retirement. The couple retired together and set sail on their Hans Christian 38′ T Cutter, Wahkuna. On their adventures on their boat, they bumped into a stray dog in Mexico who followed them around. When it was time to leave, they found him asleep on the deck of their boat and he’s been with them ever since.

Navigating is exhaustingGüero takes a nap, one of his favorite hobbies, on the Wahkuna.

With limited wifi, it was difficult to ask our prying questions, but Delphine was able to reach out to us about their adventures on the Wahkuna and the blog they run in the voice of Güero, their pup!

Please tell us a bit about yourselves. How did you meet and how did you decide to trade your regular lives for the boat life?


We met in Cuba one March break when we were both on holiday almost ten years ago. At that time I was living in Toronto and Robert was living in Ireland. However, we kept in touch and that summer he visited Toronto and we then started our relationship. We were both still working which meant that we established a long distance relationship with many trips back and forth across the Atlantic. As you might imagine a long distance relationship is not easy, so Robert decided to take early retirement and come and join me in Toronto. Separate to his retirement, I had already arranged to take a four over five, so during the time that Robert lived with me in a Toronto, we negotiated and bought our sailboat, Wahkuna. It then seemed a logical step for us to move full time on board the boat when I started my sabbatical year. As we became more familiar with our new lifestyle, I too decided to retire, so that Robert and I could continue indefinitely our sailing adventure.

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