I know Pepys was a naval administrator, but did he have any sailing experience? Had he ever been "upon the sea in a little vessel without anything in sight but yourself within the whole hemisphere."
Apparently yes, in the Med according to the book (though to be honest it just said a little vessel so it could have been a rowing boat)
Pepys wasn't a sailor and sailing for fun had only just arrived - Charles I had one of those new-fangled 'yachts' from Holland and the aristocracy raced naval vessels. But he spent lots of time on the water, being rowed along the Thames by watermen.
Having re-read that section of the book I'm pretty sure it was when he was alone on a little rowing boat in the Med.I really ought to read his diaries some day, but might check the bio by Claire Tomalin to see where/when he went travelling
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