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Travel buddies

Woman has been away at sea for 10 years, travels with only her cat

By WITW Staff on April 30, 2016

Is this the ultimate “cat lady” story? A woman from California set sail on the high seas 10 years ago for a one-of-a-kind adventure and has never returned — though she did pick up a trusty companion along the way. Captain Liz Clark had been seven years into her seemingly endless voyage when in 2013, after eight years at sea all alone, during one of her stops on land she met a cat, Amelia, that has been her first mate ever since. Amelia takes her name from another legendary explorer —  the great Amelia Earhart. Clark has been chronicling her voyage on her travel blog, and wrote about Amelia’s allure, saying, “She always had a wily, determined look in her eye — as if the world was out to get her, but she was going to get it first. She was the star of her own mystery film — a sexy, heartless secret agent always on a mission.” She also posts photos of herself with Amelia, whom she nicknamed ‘the Tropicat,” in the far-flung and often tropical locales they visit together.

Clark has now covered an astounding 18,000 nautical miles during her adventure at sea, but at one point, she and Amelia were separated, seemingly for good. During a stop on an island, Amelia strolled off and didn’t come back. After a desperate search that proved futile, Clark returned to her boat, alone, figuring she’d never see Amelia again. “I knew there was a cute little bed & breakfast on the island,” she divulged on her blog. “I figured she would be happy chasing rats and lizards for the night, and could go see the people there if she was lonely or hungry.” Miraculously, after 42 days apart a man on the island recognized Amelia and contacted Clark who returned at once to reunite with her feline sidekick. But, Clark thought, maybe Amelia preferred the land to the sea. So, she set up a test to gauge whether Amelia wanted to return to life on her boat on remain with her paws firmly on land. What she did next was very cat-like.

Read the full story at the Today show.