Seablog: Serendipity knocks

My Day 65 went from brilliant to flippin’ marvellous. Here it is…

– Lovely moon at 0430 and then the delicious treat of going back to sleep until dawn appeared
-Chickpeas for breakfast entrée, on a calm sea with clear sky
-Roasty warm sun on my back all day and juice in the batteries provided an afternoon of music and audiobooks (our first such entertainment for a whole week!)
– Film and photography session with The Tweedles; they are very photogenic and love swimming alongside the camcorder
– More couscous feasting
– Beautiful blooms of plankton visible with a calm sea
-A visit from Bluey, our somewhat prodigal but beautiful dorado
– And then,*Start the drum roll*, while surveying the golden skies at sunset and tryng to strech out my back, I heard…,*More drums* …a loud ‘Prrfffff’ from just off the bows. *Make the drums louder!* ‘IT CAN ONLY BE…!’ I squealed in excitement, and swung round to see *Trumpet, Go!* a large, smooth, black back of a whale cruising gently by, enjoying the evening air. I saw three such surfacings – so whether we had just the one Leviathian or more, I can’t say. Bigger than Dippers by quite a degree, I estimate around 15 metres of beautiful whale. Gut instinct says Pilot whale from the shape of the dorsal fin, but I need to consult my ID guide for a better diagnosis.
-Whale celebration with Port
-Rounded it off after 12 hours rowing by making it to the other side of 25° South, which Ricardo commissioned us to do by the end of the week.
-We have come 200 nauties, as the albie flies, since last lifting Bob five days ago.

All in all a very fine day at sea.

S, D & The Tweedles x

I counted 24 Tweedles in the photoshoot today!

Clem – Send my hellos to everyone at my Aussie launch pad! Enjoy the last of the season.
Ruth Ryder- Lots of interesting biofilms growing aboard – thought of you!
Barry Gumbert – We’ve got toothpaste,port, mustard or tabasco for the flavour, and neither sugar or corn syrup.Honey instead? Don’t think I realised how dark the rime is…
Moira-You’re right to envy the couscous feast, it is divine. Thinking of you amid the envelope mountains.

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14 Responses to Seablog: Serendipity knocks

  1. Amanda B says:

    Wow! That is just incredible – how wonderful, here in the office we are all so jealous of your close encounter of the huge whale kind!
    Amanda x

  2. ian brocklebank says:

    hi sarah,glad you had such a great day!about time…..sorry to hear that dippers will have to be sold,you’ve been through a lot together,hope she goes to a good home,somewhere restful…….
    i’ve seen dolphins and sharks but never a whale, they look awesome on film so in the natural habitat they must be breathetaking.
    hope the port rations are holding up well,how does it cope with getting bashed about?
    already looking forward to the book,hope you get to do sme radio and tv also,bit of recognition would not go amiss i think
    best regards to you and dippers

  3. Jenna says:

    sarah and Dips,
    eeeek I’m soo jealous!… The whale wasn’t amorously eyeing Dipper’s up was he? (I assume it’s a ‘he’ for the purposes of my comment) Steer clear of him if he was, that could mean disaster.
    So glad you’re row row rowing away so speedily, you’ll be in Mauri in no time! Festival was great, weather in dear old blighty has been lovely these last few weeks too, so can’t complain!! Although nothing compared to the great big blue!
    Stay safe,
    p.s. spoke to Vicki not so long ago, she’s been keeping an eye on you too!!
    x x

  4. The BBC think they have done rowing… but… ‘Crackers and Foggy’ didn’t do anything particularly special. They took on the easiest route across the Atlantic and claimed to win their race (which they didn’t). Don’t get me wrong, crossing any Ocean is an epic experience, but when one compares their route and voyage to yours… yours is far more worth producing! I would be far more interested to watch your production than theirs.

    Fair winds.


  5. Richard C says:

    Beats the heck out of my day- didnt even manage much by way of the sunshine here. Keep those cameras clicking.Lucky you.

    Richard c

  6. Mark Powell says:

    Awesome to see such great animals of the world in such a far away place so Jealous. Great to see the boat is going strong and the right way keep rowing on. Whale songs on the agenda for the near future or should it be mermaid? Really looking foward to the film show at Cannes (Buckingham Road)!!

  7. BPC and Albie says:

    What a totally glorious sounding day!!! (well, apart from the 12 hours rowing form my point of view – hehe!!). So pleased that it turned into such a serendipitous for you 🙂

    Still loving following you. I realised last night how different my days will be when i can no longer check on your blogs!! You can rest assured that you have totally outranked the HP research – in fact it is virtually no more!

    Much much love, xxx

  8. Tracey Mason says:

    WOW – the whole whale thing must be a highlight. Following your blogs with a keen interest. You are amazing (although clearly mad :-)) to undertake such an undertaking, but are clearly loving it. Good luck to you

  9. Robert Nixon says:

    Very cool to see such animals. Way to go on the miles Sarah. You seem to be back on the red carpet.

  10. Barry Gumbert says:

    Mustard flavored salt water taffy?????? I’d stick to a spoon of honey for energy. Let’s hope there is a chocky shop at the end of your journey. The mariner is dark but perhaps a silver lining is in store

    ‘I FEAR thee, ancient Mariner!
    I fear thy skinny hand!
    And thou art long, and lank, and brown,
    As is the ribbed sea-sand.
    I fear thee and thy glittering eye,
    And thy skinny hand, so brown.’–
    Fear not, fear not, thou Wedding-Guest!
    This body dropt not down.
    Alone, alone, all, all alone,
    Alone on a wide wide sea!
    And never a saint took pity on
    My soul in agony.
    The many men, so beautiful!
    And they all dead did lie:
    And a thousand thousand slimy things
    Lived on; and so did I.
    I looked upon the rotting sea,
    And drew my eyes away
    I looked upon the rotting deck,
    And there the dead men lay
    I looked to Heaven, and tried to pray;
    But or ever a prayer had gusht,
    A wicked whisper came, and made
    My heart as dry as dust.
    I closed my lids, and kept them close,
    And the balls like pulses beat;
    For the sky and the sea, and the sea and the sky
    Lay like a load on my weary eye,
    And the dead were at my feet.
    The cold sweat melted from their limbs,
    Nor rot nor reek did they:
    The look with which they looked on me
    Had never passed away.
    An orphan’s curse would drag to hell
    A spirit from on high;
    But oh! more horrible than that
    Is the curse in a dead man’s eye!
    Seven days, seven nights saw that curse,
    And yet I could not die.
    The moving Moon went up the sky,
    And no where did abide:
    Softly she was going up,
    And a star or two beside–
    Her beams bemocked the sultry main,
    Like April hoar-frost spread;
    But where the ship’s huge shadow lay,
    The charm’ed water burnt alway
    A still and awful red.
    Beyond the shadow of the ship,
    I watched the water-snakes:
    They moved in tracks of shining white
    And when they reared, the elfish light
    Fell off in hoary flakes.
    Within the shadow of the ship
    I watched their rich attire:
    Blue, glossy green, and velvet black,
    Then coiled and swam; and every track
    Was a flash of golden fire.
    O happy living things! no tongue
    Their beauty might declare:
    A spring of love gushed from my heart,
    And I blessed them unaware:
    Sure my kind saint took pity on me,
    And I blessed them unaware.
    The self-same moment I could pray;
    And from my neck so free
    The Albatross fell off, and sank
    Like lead into the sea.

  11. Guy says:

    Hey Sarah,

    I just started following your blog a little while ago – great stuff that you’re doing and I admire your spunk and funky blog postings! Keep up the paddling!


  12. Grandma Barb says:

    Well hello again Sarah,
    I get a feeling of awe when i check into you’re blogs from family, friends. I try to get a picture of this girl(you) who is willing to
    risk life and limb for adventure on the high seas .You are a exceptional
    person with great courage. I applaud you.
    Be careful, talk to you soon.
    Grand Barb

  13. Remora says:

    Halfway is getting closer……

  14. bernard ballard says:

    Have found your blog interesting & you make it sound very exciting.I have just come back from the Galapagos & so I have some idea what you are experiencing seeing the wild life especially the Albies which I saw mating close up. I would like to hear more about the Tweedles if you have time.

    Best wishes, Bernard.

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