Hans Andersen, a life-long fisherman, had a dream. He wanted to sail around the world. And he did it. He got several sponsors who subsidized his trip. He bought a beautiful 40-foot yacht, with all the latest technical and safety gear, and had a pleasant voyage. Well, except for almost sinking while going around the tips of South America and Africa.
The voyage went so smoothly that, looking back on it, he felt it was too easy. He needed a new challenge. He decided to build his own boat. But that was nothing new. Several people had built their own boats and sailed them around the world. No, he needed a unique boat. Watching TV commercials one day, he got it—ice cream sticks! He would be the first man to sail around the world in a boat built exclusively of ice cream sticks.
He put out the word. Within three years, school children from all over Holland had sent Hans 15 million ice cream sticks. He used these sticks to build a 45-foot replica of a Viking ship. After all the sticks were glued together, Hans took his new boat out to sea on a one-week voyage. "It's magnificent, and totally sea-worthy," he proclaimed.
He plans to set sail in early 2008 with a crew of two. He will sail across the Atlantic to Canada, and then down to Florida and through the Panama Canal. Then he'll travel to Los Angeles, Honolulu, Tokyo, around the tip of Africa, and back to Holland. "If this trip succeeds," he joked, "my next goal will be to build a plane out of ice cream sticks and fly it around the world!"