What more could you need for a happy birthday? Apart from someone to row the boat while I snooze off the fizz, nothing at all. Pleased to say this is a wonderful day – we are going in the right direction; the sun is out and the sea a beautiful blue; I’ve got cards all over the cabin and both a birthday badge and a new pair of happy socks. They are the only ‘land clean’ item of clothing on the boat now (‘boat clean’ is an oxymoron-there are just different levels of smelliness) and have come at a perfect point because the other pair of happy socks was last washed in Australia!
I even have a cake out here. Though I can’t actually eat it, for it is more photo than eggs, flour etc. A genius friend cut out a photo of a cake I was given by one of my rowing crews two years ago. It says ‘Oarsome Outen’ on it. Quite appropriate what with this rowing lark and at least I have the satisfaction of knowing that I did eat it once upon a time.
I have just enjoyed my birthday lunch of stuffed vine leaves, butter beans in a delicious sauce and a bottle of fizz. Since being at sea my stomach has shrunk and I have become a complete lightweight – feel happily tipsy and only managed half a tin of each delicacy. May have had something to do with the mars bar entrée ten minutes prior to the main course… Dinner will therefore be the same, only with a tin of peaches as well.
Not only am I both surprised and very happy to have made it to the grand old age of 2.4 decades, I am ecstatic at my ability to resist temptation. Many a night have I dreamed of those peaches and when I magically woke at the cusp of midnight last night/this morning I spent ten minutes convincing myself to wait until today and not have a sticky midnight feast. How about that for resolve?
Don’t forget, everyone is welcome to my party later 1930 onwards – whatever time zone suits. Just come quietly if you’re West of us and coming late – I don’t want an angry shark knocking on my door tomorrow saying we woke the kids.
2000-2200 BST BBC Radio 2 for my date with the lovely Radcliffe & Maconie.
Thanks everyone for the cards, messages, donations etc. Mum was away all weekend so I had a weekend’s worth emailed last night and they really made me smile after a long and tiring day chasing back miles we had lost the day before. They have helped make a super happy birthday.
Patti – Phone only ever on if I’m using it or expecting a call-so you’d be lucky to catch me! Please contact Amy at Whisper (see media page) to get my boat email address.
George, J & Monsters – Intrigued by sheep fayre! Don’t tell Mum or she’ll be knitting socks straight off their backs.
Julian & Co – Great to hear from you! Hope all well with you all. Did your folks enjoy Mauritius?
Marcel – Please ask your shipping buddy to tell all tankers I am not to be squashed!
Hazel Rossetti – I have the photo of your lucky scarf in the cabin!
Flick – Great card my friend – first turtle. Maybe a real one will show up soon. Happy memories of my 19th in Mexico! Quesadillas, beers and lots of bricks in the lagoon…
Amy B – Thought of our Eights escapades as ’tis the season! Thanks for text – don’t know if my reply made it?
Malcolm Scriven – Genius U6. Sounds like fun!
Grandma Barb – Only flying things this far out are fish and birds.
David in Telluride – Great film, watched it before I came out. Tragic ending.
Geoff & Janet – Thank goodness you’re back; I’ve been growing tired of this patch. Didn’t want you to miss anything, you see. I can’t stand those meals – they are worse than the ones from England!! I have stashed most in a locker, hopefully never going to need them…
Mrs S – Camera only. Boat too splashy/wobbly for decent sketching, especially on albie days. They need lots of wind.
Vixatus – Marvellous card & badge m’dear. Chuckled out loud . Happy birthday for the 5th!
Caroline & Roger – Happy memories of my first dip in the ocean. And that delicious lunch – any chance of a takeaway?! Roger – its Summer Eights this week in Ox. We never did catch Exeter…
Brian & Jules – Sadly the only cake is a photo of one! Your planisphere is great for learning the stars, thank you. Say hello to Jack for me.
Vicky Toon, Jay and those with arthritis – Keep truckin’ my friends, I know only something of your battles and have the utmost respect. The memory of Dad’s fight keeps me going out here.