Seablog: 'And what would you like in your roll, Madam?'

‘And what would you like in your roll, Madam?’

‘The Full 360, please.’

Yes, Folks, they were all out of cheese and ham. About two hours ago we went turtle, bottom’s up, rolled down a wave, went swimming involuntarily.

I was outside bilging out the footwell, and the next thing I knew I was in a very white salty washing machine on Full Spin. Then we had popped round and I was hanging off the edge of the boat, my lifeline caught round the gate of the oar, meaning I couldn’t get back into the boat. Undoing the line, to enable this, was one of the scariest things I have ever done. Scrambling back on board one of the most exultant.

One oar broken, one strained wrist, sunglasses and two seat pads lost to the waves. More than a little shaken up but happy to have come out in one piece. The funny thing is that all morning I had been shouting at the waves and rain clouds for getting me so wet – I realise now I was but a trifle damp compared to the full blown rolypoly wetting we were treated to.

If it’s all the same, I think I won’t have another, thank you. Been there, done that. Now please may we just be allowed to row West!

Shaken and just a little stirred,

S and my hero, the rollable, buoyant and wonderful Dippers x x

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24 Responses to Seablog: 'And what would you like in your roll, Madam?'

  1. Tim Turner says:

    Did you say hello to the Tweedles whilst you were swimming – I bet they got the shock of their lives too!

  2. Claire C says:

    Oh my!!

    I think I feel more sorry for your poor mother having to read that!

    Did you catch a glimpse of the tweedles whilst you were down there – maybe they pushed you back up to the surface, post-roll!

    Good on yer, Sarah.

  3. Charlie Chase says:

    Sarah, have you got enough spares. Oars – seat pads ?
    Is your wrist going to be O.K.
    It scares me just reading your blog.

  4. Linda Morison says:

    You are making all kinds of memories out there!!! When you are an old lady, people probably won’t belive the stories you will tell.Funnily the worse experiences make the best stories!! But really its enough you are out there doing this incredible journey all on your own.Roll on more good times I say! Take care, Linda Morison

  5. Lina says:

    Hi Sarah, surgery on the shoulder, seems so insignificant when I read what you went through. So happy that you are in one piece, except for the wrist….Hope it will not be too painful when rowing, I wish I could have a magic wand and get you closer to Mauritius, but only the “Wind” get do that for you. Good Luck….

  6. Barry Gumbert says:

    Jamie’s famous boat building skills to the rescue. I’m glad you weren’t too badly hurt.

  7. Mary Ann Barton says:

    Blimey from the comfort of my sitting room, it seems your adventures are never ending. No more rolling please, unless in triumph. Now really head in the right direction and we will be able to sleep easy, something you will have to relearn methinks. May Ann

  8. Richard C says:

    They say that when the going gets tough, the tough get going!
    I have ever faith in your ability to push through this and push on with even more determination.
    Watch your back though.

  9. Susie Calderan says:


  10. Jill Fenby-Taylor says:

    Flippin’ ‘eck!

  11. Amanda B says:

    Argh! Good ole Dippers, but is your wrist going to be ok? I’m hoping you have a spare oar, but does the First Aid kit have a spare wrist in it?! Next time an albie flies by, why not lasso him and get him to give you a tow for a few hours?! You are doing amazingly – just focus on the rum punch (plural) and keep grinning insanely!
    Amanda x

  12. Steve RPYC says:

    Hi Sarah,

    I guess when you decided to undertake the row you knew that there would be good times and bad times; and that good times are so much more wonderful when one has had some bad times to measure them against.

    I truly hope that your 360 was the depth of your bad times, and from now on things will be much more boringly better. I also hope that you had a dry spot in the cabin to warm up in, treat yourself to a hot drink and some chocolate, and generally recover from that scary dunking.

    Right now I am so glad that I am not in a tiny boat, wet and cold and thousands of miles from dry land; but then in a month or so’s time when you have achieved this mighty challenge and given practical help to the arthritis sufferers, you will have done something famously memorable, and I’ll not have. I salute you.


  13. Mark McGrouther says:

    I’m delighted to hear that you came out of a potentially fatal situation relatively unscathed. Hang in there!

  14. Amy Bryant says:

    oh my, what a report! wasn’t expecting that when I opened my email this morning. Are your food supplies all present and correct? I hope you still feel safe and secure and that your rowing isn’t hampered by pain or panic.
    Keep on trucking, lots of love,

  15. Big Ben says:

    Man alive.

    My first report after subscribing and you go and do that.


    They say motorcyclists should keep it “shiny side up”. I’m wishing you “keep the bit that’s supposed to be wet down”

    Bless you and all your efforts.

  16. Jane Spence says:

    Hi Sarah,
    Oh dear, it’s Rollover Week! Ouch – but hope you have dried out and there are still enough cushions to insulate your ‘rower’s seat’ and briny boils. Good old Dippers for bringing you full circle after this turn-for-the-worst. Hope you’ve got something in the first aid tin for that wrist. And every cloud has a silver lining – somewhere, there is one ultra-cool Tweedle posing to its friends in a pair of sunglasses.

    You were great on the Radcliffe & Maconie show – after you went off-air, they read some comments people were calling in to say about you, how inspirational you are etc. It was grand! And Mark and Stuart said they were looking forward to meeting you in person on the show when you come home.

    Stay dry and row for Mo – and those rum punches!

  17. clem says:

    Hi Sarah

    Brings back memories of trying to tip “Dippers’ over in “Challenger”. Knew she’d come good for you when needed. Blowing 35knts+ winds and rain here, winter well upon us after those balmy days of March, know how it must be for you!! Best wishes from all in Fremantle.

  18. St Hugh's College Chronicle Readers says:

    Sarah – we knew it all along. You (and your Mum)are in a different league in terms of nerve, skill, toughness – and bravery!
    Hope the wrist is not too badly sprained. May the winds blow in the right direction and bring you safe ashore in Mauritius without any more ‘rolls’.

  19. Colin R says:

    It is unbelievable the things that you have achieved so far. You determination and humour in the afce of such terrifying events makes the stress of every day life pale in comparission. Can not wait to get each new blog and to cheer you on with each reading.

  20. Dagmar says:

    Oh dear, I’m so glad you came out of the water pretty much unscathed. Hope you get some rest to recover from the swim, and that you continue making good progress. Keeping my fingers crossed and sending you lots of wind blowing you towards Mauritius!! Dagmar

  21. ian says:

    hi sarah,really great to hear you last night on radcliffe and maconie and then i open my e mails this morning and,well the best of it is that you are safe and hopefully not too knocked about,it seems dippers looked after you which is good,protestations to be careful are pretty useless where you are but nonetheless it’ll be a while before my hreart comes out of my mouth,wishing you the very best from here on and hope you are being watched over by all the good guys
    ps all available crossable stuff firmly done so…….

  22. What a frightening experience. I hope the wrist is all right and that your splendid vessel stays firmly upright from now on. Your adventures are so far removed from my comfy life here in Ashland, Oregon. I am not a sailor or rower, but I do have causes that I care about and I commend you for doing and not just talking. You are an inspiration. In part because of you I am stepping up my own crusade to encourage children to read and to widen their horizons through the written word.

    Much love and a huge hug from a complete stranger.

  23. Sarah Out in (Outen) the boat, Sarah out of her boat, Sarah back in her boat,great stuff!
    Aint u doing well!

  24. WOW! I just heard about your rollover over at Roz’s blog. Glad to hear you are OK and I hope your wrist gets better soon. I imagine that a sprained wrist gets in the way of rowing a bit.

    Take care and good luck on your adventure.

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