Andy Camarda, assisted by Markell Pool, sails in Milwaukee last year. (Catherine Hackbarth/For…)
When preparing to quit his job to go sailing around the world, Andy Camarda encountered some rough waters even before he hit the open sea.
The 25-year-old Albany Park resident announced he is scrapping his plan to take part in the Clipper Round the World race, an 11-month voyage that features teams of boaters racing around the world.
"I talked to the recruitment manager and he said there was only one spot left and it was all or nothing at that point," Camarda said. "I couldn't make the commitment because if I did make it, I would've been on the hook for everything."
Part of it was the fact that life got in the way. Camarda hadn't actually quit his job as a recruiter just yet.
"I got a huge promotion in the middle of all of this and my boss got fired," he said. "A lot of things came up in my life that prevented me from getting everything off the ground as quickly as I would've liked."
The other determining factor: money. "The amount of money you've gotta raise is just astronomical," he said.
Turns out, every dream comes with a price tag. Camarda was initially under the impression that he'd be on the hook for around $75,000, money he was planning on raising through donors, a Kickstarter campaign and other fundraisers.
"I had my lawyer look at the contract and realized that there's a lot of hidden costs involved with it that were about another $20,000-25,000 that I hadn't counted on as far as things that you've gotta pay as far as incidental costs and whatnot," he said. "Once you're off the boat, you've gotta take care of everything."
He wouldn't specify how much money he had raised before deciding to scrap his plans but did say he isn't keeping a dime of it.
"Everything I've got I've already given back," he said. "Any checks I had, I didn't cash yet."
Camarda hasn't ruled out taking part in the race in 2015 just yet. In the meantime, he plans on spending as much time sailing as possible.
So what'd he learn from all of this?
"Maybe just take a step back, be more realistic, listen to my parents a little bit more and that I know exactly what I'm getting into," he said.
Matt Lindner is a RedEye special contributor.
Want more? Discuss this article and others on RedEye's Facebook page.