I hear that winter has returned to you at home and a chilly north wind is making things feel really cold there. I have to say that with the temperature here getting up into the thirties most days, the prospect of a snow shower or two is quite appealing. But I guess it will all have gone by the time I arrive back in the UK. I’ll carry on wishing and listening to Chris Rea singing on the beach then.
Hearing and thinking about the cold weather it reminded me of the other things I’m missing from home.
Top of the list are Elaine, Bradley and Joel of course. I’ll see you soon now, all my love.
I’m looking forward to seeing friends and colleagues. Taking out the rubbish and tripping over the kids toys is something I didn’t think I’d miss, but I do. The rain running up my sleeves when I’m climbing! Everyday things like fresh fruit and vegetables, sliced bread, brown bread, wholemeal bread, bread rolls, baguettes, ciabiatta, fish and chips, beer, apple pie. Oh, and did I mention bread. Long hot baths (once I can cope with lowering certain sore parts of my body into hot water!
I’m looking forward to growing my skin back in all sorts of places and not having salt with everything. It will be a refreshing change not to have fish scales with everything too.
You can see from my progress that I’m not too far now from my destination. Unfortunately I won’t hit Antigua as planned and will land in Barbados around the 5th of April (or perhaps before with luck). The continual north winds, for a good part of my journey, have blown me too far south to contemplate battling against them to enable me to reach Antigua. I just don’t have the will to fight it any more. But I’m looking forward to it. I’ve been to Barbados before and the people there are fantastic so I’m really looking forward to renewing my acquaintanceship with some of them.
I’d like to say hi and thanks again to Thomas from Port St. Charles, Barbados for the chat and the kind offer from his friend with the small plane. The pilot is going to fly out when I’m about fifty miles offshore to take some aerial photographs of my best efforts. You’ll see some vigorous rowing then!! He’s also offered to come out in his boat when I approach the port to take some close ups so I must remember to book an appointment to have my hair and nails done beforehand.
I nipped into the water to do some outside cleaning the other day expecting to be greeted by my fishy companions, but there wasn’t one to be seen. I knew they had been under pretty much constant attack recently from predators as they’ve been leaping over and around the boat in their attempts to escape being a larger fish’s dinner.
The most common predators I’ve seen around recently have been sail fish. The biggest one up to now was four metres long and it was coming towards me at high speed. In the first instance I was looking beyond it to see who was firing torpedoes at me, but as it came close to the boat it veered off in pursuit of its rapidly disappearing lunch! I got some great video footage of another such instance when a sail fish took a meter long Dorado in the air near the stern of my boat.
Time for a few answers and hellos
Thanks to all my regular texters.
Thanks to Kath and all her work colleagues. I’m never going to get jeans to fit these legs now!! Tell Phil to book his ticket.
Hey Blackpool – don’t you know driving can be dangerous, stick to something safer like solo climbing.
Thanks for the information about the birds. I know that some of them are either Stormy or Leach’s Petrels and others are Cory’s Shearwater. Someone suggested that some of them might be albatross but I think it’s a bit far north for them.
Cath – I have a Petrel roosting in my foot well during the night and I have to clean out the feathers and droppings each morning. I’ve nick named him/her drumstick as my food supplies are running low and I am beginning to think roast Petrel might be appearing on the menu sometime soon (just joking). Can anyone recommend an appropriate stuffing?
My compass has boiled and leaked again.
My arms are very sunburnt despite the application of gallons of sun cream.
Pat and Ron – I’ve seen one yacht on the distant horizon; my only sighting of any other vessel in 60+ days at sea.
When I left La Gomera I was an hour behind the two lads in the pairs boat, but in the last two months we have been as much as 500 miles apart at times. I’m now many miles in front of them. That’s just the way it goes at sea.
Simon – I will never be without an ipod again. I have mine on for up to twenty hours a day. It’s attached to an amplifier and two external speakers.
Thanks to Alan – I trust India was a great adventure.
Dave Smith – The night sky fills me with awe and wonder. With no light pollution I have never seen anything like it. Sometimes though, when it is very dark it can be so black it makes your hair stand on end. It’s like swimming in black velvet. (A pint of that would be nice any time now too)
Hi Imelda, Sue and Heather
Hi Sylvia and Dennis from USA
Hi Chris and Elaine.
Hi Sharky 2
Tel – A juicy steak and a beer sounds good to me.
Scraggy – you can book a table at the Chinese
Rebecca – I think you’d better have my job, because I’ve decided to row back too!
Dave C – just try and keep me out of the pub. I’ll see you first day back.
I think that’s all for now. I’ll pass any other interesting stuff on, but I think my next news will be when I reach land.