A 54-year-old guy from Poland was rescued off the coast of Madagascar on Christmas Day after SEVEN MONTHS lost at sea.  (His name is tough to pronounce . . . Zbigniew Reket.)

When he started his trip back in May, he planned to sail about 1,200 miles from the east coast of Africa to South Africa.  But then his engine died, and so did his radio.

The rudder on his boat also broke, so he couldn’t steer.  And he started drifting in the wrong direction . . . dead east, toward the middle of the Indian Ocean.

He only had a month’s worth of food when he left, so he really had to stretch it out.  He says he managed to catch some fish while he was out there.  But by the end, he was surviving on a half pack of ramen noodles a day.

We’ve seen similar stories before.  But this one’s a little different because he wasn’t alone.  Right before he left, he got a CAT to bring with him named Samira.  And the cat ALSO made it.

Our first question was:  Did he ever consider EATING IT to survive?  Luckily he didn’t have to make that decision.  Someone spotted their boat before his ramen supply ran out.

The Coast Guard found them near Reunion Island, about 600 miles east of Madagascar.  There’s nothing east of there until you hit Australia.  So it was his last chance.  He was malnourished, but he’s fine now.  And so is the cat.

(NY Daily News / Metro)