Seablog: Ouch, this looks like it might hurt

It looks like next week will be testing, to say the least. Here is the latest from Ricardo.


In essence – we will be blown backwards. Rowing West in SW winds is well nigh impossible…

This wasn’t quite the update I had been hoping for to herald the weekend. Fingers crossed it changes again and ‘Please oh please Mr Weathermaker’, don’t push me back over the half way line!

We’re about to pull an all nighter on the oars and see if we can add a few more miles to the West. Sleep can happen another day…

S & D x

My ID guide suggests my whaley encounter was not a Pilot whale – if my estimate of size was correct – but something else bigger than a Pilot. Not sure what sort of something else, however, apart from a very special something else.


Charlie Martell -We had various TV folks interested before but no one wanted to actually commission. So maybe they’ll change their minds when I’m back. We’ve got 2 years of buildup footage too so it tells the whole story. Any further Commando Joes planned?

Remora – We’re over half way already -it’s getting further away!

Jenna – Don’t worry, The Tweedles will fight off any over-enthusiastic suitor!

Geoff & Spike: Abersoch?!

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15 Responses to Seablog: Ouch, this looks like it might hurt

  1. Susie Calderan says:

    Greetings from your friendly whale consultant, here to solve all your whale-based ID problems! Now, as you know because you listened very carefully to every word I ever said, a pilot whale is not a whale, but a dolphin. Sociable souls, you probably wouldn’t see them by themselves, and (as you said) not anywhere near big enough anyway. So it’s probably a ‘proper’whale. From time of year, area and size of beastie, I’d go for a Bryde’s, sei or fin whale. Bryde’s whale have 3 ridges on rostrum, sei just have one. Fin whale’s right lower jaw is white. You probably didn’t see any of this 🙂 When fin whales surface, their fin appears after their blow hole, not at the same time (unlike sei whales). Sei whale fin really quite falcate. You probably didn’t see any of this either 🙂 But that’s all brilliant news nonetheless, and you take care in that nasty weather, now…

  2. Jill and Stan Lewis says:

    Take care Sarah We will be routing for you.
    Thanks for the correction of the author.
    Love your blogs so much.Loved the whale party.
    Hope you remember us on the opposite side of the jetty from Dippers when we were both loading our boats (for vastly different reasons)at RPYC Jill and Stan

  3. Hello Sarah – we know you, Dippers & Bob will ride out the bad weather be okay. Keep positive and we hope you have a fine selection of chocolate & biscuits for the few days coming up you will be cabin bound! I expect after your all nighter on the oars, you will be in need of lots of sleep. Thinking of you always, love Emily & Jamie x

  4. Pam Stocker says:

    Not sure what prayer does in these circs, but will ask the storm stiller to keep an eye on a little boat in a big ocean, and maybe to breathe Sarah some inner calm and some of the real stuff to blow a bit more in a righter direction. Brilliant to have Ricardo, even when he can’t be the bearer of good news. Lots of love and keep safe. Perhaps we (your admiring and stalwart bloggers) should agree to pay extra to ARTHRITIS CARE for every mile you’re swept backwards, then at least somebody gets something good out of your hard won miles being squandered. Really make it worth your while, for all the frustration. Now there’s an odd idea, being sponsored for not getting there when ‘getting there’ is temporarily rather difficult! Like Britsh Rail and their wrong kind of leaves, wrong kind of snow, wrong kind of rain….. This service will temproarily run in the opposite direction. Random wanderings. Off to see Godot tonight. Now there’s a play where nothing happens – twice! Nothing happens once in Act One and then it happens again in ACT 2. I’ll think of you and choose a suitable quote to send you. xx Pam

  5. Jim Groark says:

    Keep going Sarah, you are doing fantastic. Just remember, pain is only temporary, the glory lasts forever!! All the best, Jim

  6. David B. says:

    Missed a few days of Sarah following. Reading the blogs in reverse order, starting with bad news first. Oh well, at least you got in a few really fine days there before the it goes the other way.Up and down, up and down, thats how it goes at sea.Through it all you always remain bouyant (may your boat remain the same).I’ve strangly come to think of myself, along with all the others following your blog, as “tweedles”.We also follow your boat,glide in it’s path, dart out occaisionally to snatch some new morsel you’ve tossed our way.
    All of your tweedles will be breathing easyer, and feeling more relaxed when this latest bit of abomidable weather will have passed, bob is back in his box again,and you’r rowing and surfing with renewed gusto, back on deck in the sunshine and fresh air.
    David B. , in Telluride

  7. Barry Gumbert says:

    Hey dear one:

    Went looking for info to see what kind of whale friends you might be seeing and was I surprsed?Yes I was.


    How many whale species are found in Australian waters ?

    * 8 species of baleen whales (Blue, Fin, Sei, Bryde’s, Minke, Humpback, Southern Right, Pygmy);

    * 35 species of toothed whale (including Sperm, Orca, Pilot, Melon, Strap-toothed, Beaked);

    * Nearly 60% of the world’s total number of whales, dolphins and porpoises are found in Australian waters.

    Part Six

    OH sleep! it is a gentle thing,
    Beloved from pole to pole!
    To Mary Queen the praise be given!
    She sent the gentle sleep from Heaven,
    That slid into my soul.
    The silly buckets on the deck,
    That had so long remained,
    I dreamt that they were filled with dew;
    And when I awoke, it rained.
    My lips were wet, my throat was cold,
    My garments all were dank;
    Sure I had drunken in my dreams,
    And still my body drank.
    I moved, and could not feel my limbs:
    I was so light–almost
    I thought that I had died in sleep,
    And was a bless’ed ghost.
    And soon I heard a roaring wind:
    It did not come anear;
    But with its sound it shook the sails,
    That were so thin and sere.
    The upper air burst into life!
    And a hundred fire-flags sheen,
    To and fro they were hurried about!
    And to and fro, and in and out,
    The wan stars danced between.
    And the coming wind did roar more loud,
    And the sails did sigh like sedge;
    And the rain poured down from one black cloud;
    The Moon was at its edge.
    The thick black cloud was cleft, and still
    The Moon was at its side:
    Like waters shot from some high crag,
    The lightning fell with never a jag,
    A river steep and wide.
    The loud wind never reached the ship,
    Yet now the ship moved on!
    Beneath the lightning and the Moon
    The dead men gave a groan.
    They groaned, they stirred, they all uprose,
    Nor spake, nor moved their eyes;
    It had been strange, even in a dream,
    To have seen those dead men rise.
    The helmsman steered, the ship moved on;
    Yet never a breeze up-blew;
    The mariners all ‘gan work the ropes,
    Where they were wont to do;
    They raised their limbs like lifeless tools–
    We were a ghastly crew.
    The body of my brother’s son
    Stood by me, knee to knee:
    The body and I pulled at one rope,
    But he said nought to me.
    ‘I fear thee, ancient Mariner!’
    Be calm, thou Wedding-Guest!
    ‘Twas not those souls that fled in pain,
    Which to their corses came again,
    But a troop of spirits blest:
    For when it dawned–they dropped their arms,
    And clustered round the mast;
    Sweet sounds rose slowly through their mouths,
    And from their bodies passed.
    Around, around, flew each sweet sound,
    Then darted to the Sun;
    Slowly the sounds came back again,
    Now mixed, now one by one.
    Sometimes a-dropping from the sky
    I heard the sky-lark sing;
    Sometimes all little birds that are,
    How they seemed to fill the sea and air
    With their sweet jargoning!
    And now ’twas like all instruments,
    Now like a lonely flute;
    And now it is an angel’s song,
    That makes the heavens be mute.
    It ceased; yet still the sails made on
    A pleasant noise till noon,
    A noise like of a hidden brook
    In the leafy month of June,
    That to the sleeping woods all night
    Singeth a quiet tune.
    Till noon we quietly sailed on,
    Yet never a breeze did breathe:
    Slowly and smoothly went the Ship,
    Moved onward from beneath.
    Under the keel nine fathom deep,
    From the land of mist and snow,
    The spirit slid: and it was he
    That made the ship to go.
    The sails at noon left off their tune,
    And the ship stood still also.
    The Sun, right up above the mast,
    Had fixed her to the ocean:
    But in a minute she ‘gan stir,
    With a short uneasy motion–
    Backwards and forwards half her length
    With a short uneasy motion.
    Then like a pawing horse let go,
    She made a sudden bound:
    It flung the blood into my head,
    And I fell down in a swound.
    How long in that same fit I lay,
    I have not to declare;
    But ere my living life returned,
    I heard and in my soul discerned
    Two voices in the air.
    ‘Is it he?’ quoth one, ‘Is this the man?
    By him who died on cross,
    With his cruel bow he laid full low
    The harmless Albatross.
    The spirit who bideth by himself
    In the land of mist and snow,
    He loved the bird that loved the man
    Who shot him with his bow.’
    The other was a softer voice,
    As soft as honey-dew:
    Quoth he, ‘The man hath penance done,
    And penance more will do.’

  8. Spike says:

    Hi Sarah, sorry about your forecast. Hope Bob behaves himself this time.

    It’s quite a few more days until the Abersoch anniversary. 5 June (07) was positioning for the PE assault on Lands End. 6 June was that fitful RT call of “Spiike – the RIB electrics are making smoke !” Still, it kept the TV crew alert.

    Watching your Green line. Love to the Tweedles and Albie.

  9. Marcel says:

    Chin up Sarah.
    We are all willing you here.
    I just came from the showing of Arthuus-Bertrand’s film HOME on the environment. It was shown simultaneously in 109 countries in 33 languages. Scary. We are really raping our planet.
    There was a magnificient shot of a giant whale doing somersaults.
    Also included some shots of Mauritius.

  10. RoninVancouver says:

    Que sera, Sarah,

    Back in my youth it was a tremendous thrill to ride the roller coaster…. until I started riding the rollers off the west coast of Vancouver Island in a sea kayak. Fotunately, I could head for the beach when exhaustion approached. So…

    I fully accept and second the motion for Pam Stocker’s concept of putting extra dinero aside when adverse weather conditions impede your progress. If my wrists and ankles could still weather the weather I would love to still be out there with free-spirit people like you and Roz.

    Your adventure makes my heart sing, and my spirit is sailing with you! Bon chance, ma petite!

  11. Jane Spence says:

    Hi Sarah,
    Sorry about the weather forecast;let’s hope it doesn’t knock you back.
    Thought of you this week in Cornwall – especially on Thursday when there were 20 basking sharks in Sennen Cove doing a spot of hoovering. No albies though!

    Keep going well, best Jane

  12. Spike says:

    On reflection, you probably meant “Abersoch Syndrome” is about to hit you. Comiserations and hope it doesn’t last quite that long !!

    Happy Sox – how do you know when they need a wash ? When they stick to the bulkhead. (Old Far East Fleet test)

  13. Shannon says:

    Stay safe out there and enjoy your Happy Socks!

  14. terry bradley says:

    Hi SARAH
    Hope it is not to uncomfortable out their tonight with the weather change , & alls well with you ,soon you will have some great weather to push you west to your goal,a bit of weather wont deter you, Have a good rest ,be nice and fresh to row when the weather abates ,Good to hear that the wild life is keeping you company ,its taking good care of you. been nice sunny days here light winds & cold (GERALDTON W.Aust.) long way from you though. you are certainly leaving us behind now , Take Care, will keep looking for your blogs with all your good humor & good spirit !! Terry Bradley

  15. ian brocklebank says:

    hi sarah,sorry to hear about the less than perfect forecast,willing it to be better than expected,you’ve done so well so far and everyone who knows about you will i’m sure be hoping for the best…
    hope dippers and bob do the businessfor you!

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