Day 151: Hanging Up My Oars

You can see ROZ’S ROUTE here. Each dot links to the blog from that day. Likely to arrive 3rd October.

I owe you an explanation. I’m not very good at making Announcements (with a capital A). Maybe it’s in the interests of Ultimate Flexibility (UF), but my plans tend to kind of dribble out into the public arena, and occasionally dribble back in again. So I never formally announced that I was going to do the North Atlantic in 2012 – it just appeared on the map on my home page – and I have never formally un-announced it either.

But you may have gathered, from a few passing comments under “Other Stuff”, that I no longer intend to row from New York to London next year. And it is time that I explained why. There are many reasons, each of them strong in its own right, and adding up to a very definite decision – or, at least, a very definite decision as far as the immediate future goes. UF Rules!

1. Mission Accomplished

When I first envisioned becoming an ocean rower back in 2004, I intended to row around the world. Turns out, that isn’t possible. Small rowboats aren’t allowed through big commercial canals like the Suez and the Panama, and southern capes are dangerous. Also, rowboats are very much at the mercy of winds and currents, which tend to go in circles within each ocean rather than conveniently linking up into a global conveyor belt, and there are too many cases of “you can’t get there from here”. So I settled for rowing across the “Big Three” oceans – Atlantic, Pacific and Indian. With a bit of luck and a following wind, I will very soon accomplish that.

The 2012 row was an afterthought that occurred to me in 2010. I have now thought better of it (after-un-thunked it?).

2. Sedna Solo (Retd)

It became apparent early on in the Indian Ocean voyage that Sedna is past her prime. Water is seeping into previously watertight lockers. The marine ply of her deck needs completely replacing. Not a single piece of electronic equipment is fully functional. Even the electrical system itself is working courtesy only of a few inches of electrical tape and a rhino clip. It would require a huge, costly, and time-consuming overhaul to make her seaworthy again.

3. Immovable Deadline

The point of doing the 2012 row was to arrive in London in time for the 2012 Olympics. It would be touch and go whether I could get there in time. I wouldn’t be able to leave from the US until after the spring storms, and the opening ceremony is on 27th July. Arriving late would defeat the whole purpose, and from what I have read about failed expeditions, tight deadlines make for poor decisions and increased risk. When I thought about it some more, the venture seemed excessively “do or die” – literally.

4. A Pearl In The Storm

When I called my mother on the satphone from the Pacific last year and told her about my bright idea to row the North Atlantic, I thought she would be quite blase about it, having already endured four of my voyages. But there was a resounding silence on the other end of the phone. Then, last Christmas, she gave me a copy of Tori Murden’s book, A Pearl in the Storm: How I Found My Heart in the Middle of the OceanMemoirs) which you may recall from my blog “Beginner’s Guide to Boat-Rolling”. The storm in question took place on the North Atlantic – as, indeed, did “The Perfect Storm ” The crossing from North America to Europe is notoriously rough, cold, and foggy – not to mention chock-full of commercial shipping traffic. It can be done, of course – Harbo and Samuelson did it, as did Blyth and Ridgway, Oliver Hicks, and Maud Fontenoy – but it’s just not nice.

5. Time Out

Globally, there seems to be a sense of accelerating change. I am already wondering how the world will have changed during the 5 months I have been at sea this year. I have sometimes felt a little frustrated at being so far removed from any news sources. It’s hard to keep your finger on the pulse when you’re quite possibly the world’s most remote human being [link to that blog]. I feel the need to be contactable and in contact with what’s happening in these fast-moving times.

Plus, this year, it troubled me when Mum broke her leg and I couldn’t be there. What if it had been something more serious, and it would be three months before I could get to her? She isn’t getting any younger, and if something bad happened I’d never forgive myself.

6. Time For A Change

After 6 years and 15,000 miles, I’ve probably taken this ocean rowing thing about as far as I can – both personally and “professionally”, i.e. in my environmental campaigning.

Personally, my steepest learning curve was during my first crossing – the Atlantic. Since then, each voyage has become progressively deeper inside my comfort zone. I am not learning as much any more. It is time to find myself a new challenge that will stretch me anew.

And “professionally”, I want to shift focus. I’ve done my rowing and I’ve got my sea stories – more than enough to fuel a lifetime of speaking engagements. I want to get more “hands-on” with my campaigning. I plan to spend 2012 tying off the loose ends of my ocean rowing career in a Maisie-Dobbs-like final accounting: finish editing the book, make the film, assemble the multimedia presentation – and then move on to more direct methods of creating positive change in the world. Alongside more focused campaigning, I fully intend to do more expeditions to provide material for blogs, books, and more, but they won’t take me way out into the middle of gargantuan bodies of water any more.

When the legendary British oarsman Sir Steve Redgrave announced his retirement after the 2000 Olympics, he famously said, “If you see me anywhere near a boat, shoot me”… only to come out of retirement to win his fifth gold medal in 2004. So I hesitate to say “never again”. I will merely say, “enough is enough – for now”. But stay tuned – I have a feeling that life is going to be anything but boring for the foreseeable future!

Other Stuff:

1000 blogs! Phewee. Makes me feel quite exhausted just thinking about writing 1,000 blogs! And I suppose that half of them have been written at sea – one for each of my 500 days out here

Quote for the day: “Don’t simply retire from something; have something to retire to.” (Harry Emerson Fosdick)

Sponsored Miles: Nick Perdiew, Alexandra Stevens, Bruce Gervais, Doug Grandt, Louis Girard, Gina Alzate, Jim@Fourth Element, Anthea Maton, Auntie Julie West – thank you for sponsoring miles; also David Cameron, Nick Perdiew, David Swenson, Jim@@ Fourth Element and Chris Lynch who sponsored higher numbers.

  • Tom Brown

    Good call, Roz. As much as I am impressed and encouraged by your strength of will and indomitable spirit, I was really concerned about your decision to row the North Atlantic, recalling the fate of much larger ships than Sedna (and there goes Celene Dion singing in my head again, darn it!).
    Stay safe as you complete your World Record Row.

  • Jacob Tanenbaum

    Congrats in advance.  You are about to make history!.  That being said, I can’t imagine you would not feel like giving up your oars right now.  It’s been a long trip on a big ocean.  But you have never been one to sit still as far as I can see.  Good luck on whatever journeys you cook up next.  Ocean or otherwise.

  • http://www.facebook.com/Moonshadow2 Cynthia Kruger

    All I can do really is echo what Tom (Brown) just posted.  You have an incredible will, an indomitable spirit, and are seemingly wise beyond your years.  Your message about the oceans, the world, and what we are doing to them is your journey.  The rows while amazing in their own right have merely been your vehicle for connecting the rest of us with an urgent message that we must clean up our collective act now.

    Thank you for doing what you do and have done . . . Thank you for showing us the way (or at least part of it).  And most particularly thank you for infusing us with some of your will and spirit!

    ROW (safely) ROZ ROW!!!

  • Eric

    Hi Roz,

    Although I didn’t know about the next Atlantic row’s time constraints, I wondered if you would keep orbiting the world over and over again.  I kind of felt that once this was completed you’d be well past Mission Accomplishment.  So I’m glad you’ve made this choice and hope you can find a challenge to satisfy you in the years to come.  Thank you for sharing your adventures!

    Cheers,
    Eric

  • Laurey

    Dear Roz,

    Good for you!  I think that changing one’s mind is a rarity and I commend you for thinking clearly about what really matters to you – and then moving in that direction, even if you SAID something different.

    In my newsletter today I am featuring my personal heroes.  you are # 1.  This week I finished my 6th chemotherapy treatment.  6 more to go.  Halfway.  One stroke, one breath, one thought at a time.

    Welcome back to land.  Can’t wait until we meet up in person again sometime.

    with great admiration,
    Laurey (in Asheville!)

  • Dave Cornthwaite

    Roz, only you know when it’s time. Goodness knows you deserve a break, it’s been a pleasure following you. Get home safe at the end of this one, go go go…

  • Carleen Imlach

    Congratulations! On celebrating what you’ve done, seeing what you’ve achieved and the courage to envision something new. I hope the arrival back on land is as exciting as you imagine it will be. You are an inspiration (I know you keep hearing that) but it’s true.  As for me, I will miss reading your daily blog from your watery home. And I hope to catch up with you somewhere on dry land. Lots of love and stay safe.  xx 

  • Oba Skeg

    Well your rowing and campaigning have always been an inspiration so whilst you may be hanging up your oars (for now), your heart won’t be leaving the oceans – and that is a good thing.

  • JohnH

    Well done, glad you made it safely.

  • Anonymous

    I’m sure Rita appreciates the “she’s not getting any younger” although I understand the sentiment, you could have been more delicate, lol.
    In other news, I can’t wait for the book, the movie and what adventure comes next.
    Get home safely Roz

  • http://profiles.google.com/muffelkopf Tumbleweed Truckers

    I am excited for you and whatever new adventures you do!!

  • http://twitter.com/karenbdc Karen Douglas

    Congratulations Roz – both on the accomplishments to date and the wisdom to know when to hang them up.
    There are many people involved in trying to do a global shift and you may find the work of Birth 2012 engaging http://birth2012.com/.
    The theory behind it makes sense to me – from crisis we evolve and we are at an evolution point now because we are in crisis on so many levels. As we identify our personal concerns for the world – we choose to join in and help make a shift in the larger world. Everything starts with a vision for something different (I hesitate to use better because that is judgmental).
    As I referenced before Otto Scharmer’s work with Theory U (the book) and all of the resources he has developed are also in line with working towards something better for our world.
    Best wishes with your future works – you have inspired so much change in people and how they live.

  • http://www.facebook.com/jess.reese Jess Reese

    Roz,
    There are myriad adventures to be had. You have had three great ones. I am sure you will find many more that help to heal the planet.
    Namaste.
    Jess Reese

  • Stan

    Roz,

    Thanks for clearing up the situation for us. Careful readers have been wondering about this for a month or so now. Few of us can imagine the isolation you must feel at times. I know it would be hard for me to get my head around the idea that hundreds of people are listening to me via my blogs every day when I only have actual contact, and then not physical, with a handful. As for the physical aspect of it all I’m in awe. After a half hour on a rowing machine my bony bum is killing me. How you do it for hours on end I can’t fathom. I look forward to seeing where your future takes you.

    Maybe you could use a bicycle powered speaking tour around the UK or US as a retirement goal. Many of us who have followed your blogs all these years could join you riding various legs of the “voyage” and share in your adventure actually not just vicariously. Such a trip would allow you to see up close and personal many of the actions you have helped inspire, give followers a chance to meet and greet a hero, and provide untold learning opportunities. Leaky compartments would be much less problematic as well.

    Row to completion Roz

  • Anonymous

    Roz. from a selfish view i and many others will miss your blogs and the inspiration that goes with them. I admire your stength of character that says “enough”….Something tells me you will find something to foill the void…and i have no doubt we will all follow you with awe and interest. you are a star!! David church

  • Gannon123

    Again, thank you for your adventures and inspiration. Sometimes reaching beyond the designated goal just doesn’t have the same passion or punch. Your plan makes perfect sense and although I will miss your hands-on ocean adventures, it is time to integrate your major accomplishments. Imagine how many children will aspire to their dreams as a result of hearing about yours; there is so much to do. Thank you and safe journey to your upcoming dock!

  • Gina Alzate

    Roz,

    I marvel how you continue to inspire even through your decision making process, how you consider all angles that matter to you and to those you love. One thing I learned from following your journey is how you take one day at a time in full appreciation, and how you remain present and aware of all the gifts of the day. There is always a nugget of wisdom to be gained from each day’s adventures. Your blogs are full of those daily nuggets of experiential wisdom.

    There are many other oceans to explore in the mythical sense. There are minds to navigate, as persuasion to change human behaviors require a more tenacious, strategic approach in reasoning. Perhaps you are feeling the need to take your journey to another level, more in alignment towards your goals of helping humanity transform its mindfulness toward ocean conservation.

    For now, you have Sedna to bring you to a strong finish to this remarkable and ambitious goal completed with all the highs and lows of solitude and determination. You are truly an inspiration!Go, Roz, Go! More Power to You!Angel Blessings,Gina

  • http://www.facebook.com/danegolden Dane Golden

    Congratulations on a great career Roz!

  • http://twitter.com/familyonbikes Nancy Sathre-Vogel

    I can totally understand why you’re hanging up your oars – pretty much the same reason we’re retiring our bicycles. We’ve enjoyed our 4 years of full time travel on our bicycles as a family. It’s been a wonderful four years and I am so very thankful we’ve had the opportunity to do it. That being said, traveling on bikes is now old hat for us – it’s routine and comfortable and the learning curve is behind us. We’re moving on – we’re hoping to pick up paddles now and start kayaking!

    You’ll find your niche and happy and challenged. It’ll take some time, but that’s OK – don’t rush it.

  • Anonymous

    Dear Roz,   Row Roz Row!  We are pulling for you.  Cheers,  Stephen

  • Nancy S.

    Fantastic!!  Excellent!!  Great idea!! Oh, what relief… I already voiced my opinion that going forward you have so much more to contribute on land than at sea.  What you are about to achieve – and what you already achieved – is far more than praiseworthy. The way I see it, if you were on Mt. Olympus in the land of Zeus and company, you are about to enter the courtyard of the “immortals…” So tempt not the gods, and bring that fire down to the common folk, so that you may light the way for many, many more. And know, dear Roz, that you have already lit scores of torches.Godspeed!

  • Margaret Bowling

    Roz
    I applaud your decision. I read your blog and just thought, yes, how brilliant of you to be brave enough to make this decision. It’s hard to close the chapter on certain books but it feels like the right time and the right choice. 3 oceans is the most phenomenal achievement, and 3 oceans solo is IMMENSE. 
    Can’t wait to see you
    Margaret x

  • Matt McFadyen

    Roz you are total inspiration to me and so many others around the world, I am so privileged to call you a friend and I even get to boast to people that “she crashed at my place in Sydney once” 

    Really looking forward to catching up with you when you get back to dry land and over to  San Fran. There are number of people here in the USA that I have spoken to that are very keen to meet you. 

    Looking forward to buying you a drink or two in the not to distant future. Well done!!

  • Anonymous

    I agree! So where do I sign up to be a supporter for then next adventure? 
    Please let me know when the sigh up sheet is completed and announced.
     
    Also, hint,hint here, Since you are gaining much of your popularity here in the US consider living on this side of the pond. We make really good friends here and each of us would do our best to propel you forward, even if you decided to pick up your sticks again.  
     
    I for one would jump at the chance to go the Savage school of survival, Attend Savage solo training for water and adventure hounds. Sure I’d eat strawberries from Savage Farms, (although we’d have to work on the name:)
    Savage all Organic Pasty Company at saturday morning farmers market? Heck Yeah!  Or best you could spend some of your time helping out volunteer organizations and then helping them write up good things about the organization.(Teach harbor seals how to swim at The Marine Mammal Center)  I just threw these out here to get you to stay in Northern California where any of your actions will always be accepted and unlike crossing an ocean(s), easily doable.
     
    The acceleration that you mention is palpable, I would like to discuss some things that ring true to my heart and I believe will also resonate with yours. Even some inventions and thought processes have been changing rapidly of late. TED Talks as only one example to a “New Shool” of thinking that is not only interesting but also inclusionary (We are not the only ones thinking what we are thinking)
     
     
    Two Hands Progect and Plastic Oceans have written back and they congratulate you as well as spreading your arrival new.
     
    We are setting up a great party for you. Here is the tentative invite for now. Friday October 21 from two pm onwards At the Historic Dolphin Swiming an Boating Club at Hyde Street Pier (502 Jefferson) in San Francisco Roz has travel related time constraints that prevent her from staying longer into the evening. Impromptu parties will surely arise between now and then so stay tuned…
     
     Cheers Roz, I hope by the time you read this, you will be in crisp white sheets, a little tipsy from the drinks with your mum and your friends and will not have one ounce of happy energy left to reply.
     
    *C*o*N*g*R*a*T*u*L*a*T*i*O*n*S* Ms World Record Setter! You are AMAZING!

  • Diane Freeman

    You know we’ll all support you in whatever you decide is best for you and the cause. Besides, after the last few months, you deserve to arrive at the Olympics on the deck of a luxury cruise ship, sitting on a deck chair drinking a Margarita.

  • Nancy

    Go Laurie go!  (All the best to you in your journey.) you are just as admirable, chin up.

  • StinsonBeach

    StinsonBeach here.

    Just got back from a road-trip to Sausalito/Stinson/Bolinas. Gave them all your best & a pint – or 2 or . . . – in your honor. They’re waiting anxiously for your return. It’s perfect there right now. They had one of their “grey summers” but it’s now “Stage” weather. If you don’t know what that means, ask when you get there!

            xos, rocky

  • Anonymous

    or some European Climate Rides…

  • Anonymous

    Maybe my chance to swim in the Bay before the party??

  • Anonymous

    AmHey~ Absolutely! That one is super easy,let me know,I will chase in kayak or take the plunge with you. (our friend reuben has a hot sauna… shhhhhh)
    :)

    ~Jay

  • Anonymous

    You’re amazing and what a beautiful picture!

    I look forward to watching your future land adventures.

    You’re so close! Continued success and love. 

  • Noelle

    Roz, I love your orderly rationalisation (wish my brain worked like that!) and ‘retiring’ makes perfect sense! I must say you’re inspirational on water or out and we all can’t wait to share another vino and stories! Big hugs and you’re almost there… good luck with the sea legs! xx

  • Leven Brown

    Hey Roz!

    Great watching your voyage and a huge well done .. not long now!

    The North .. from personal experience I can say you won’t regret your decision – it is a really nasty old place and you certainly don’t have to prove to anyone that you can do it – we believe you!! hehe ..  

    Keep pulling them sticks Roz … you are a legend!

    Leven xx

  • DogsDontPurr

    Phew! I am greatly relieved that this is your last row (for now)! As much as I have loved living your adventure vicariously through the blogs, I’ve also been concerned for your safety. Even though we only met briefly once at a book signing, I have come to consider you a good friend due to the conversations and connections on this blog. When you announced that you were going to do this row, the Indian Ocean, I must say, I got a bit of a knot in my stomach. There were sooo many risks that would be beyond your control. But yet again, you have proved all of us worriers wrong…and you have done it! But, now I am totally relieved that we can quit worrying that you were going to put us all through this yet again! (And I mean that in the kindest way.)

    Cheers to getting on dry land soon! And cheers to whatever further adventures you have  planned. You know we’ll be here on the edge of our seats cheering you on (and worrying….just a little!)

    ~Marcie
    dogsdontpurr.com

  • Tom Santaniello

    Roz: I have the greatest amount of respect for what you have accomplished, what you have shown the world to be possible, and lastly for the type of human being we all aspire to be like. Wherever life may lead you and the challenges you may take on, may God show you safe passage. I look forward to your next book and hope to someday meet you in person to say “ WELL DONE ” Roz. Godspeed Roz…… 

  • Charlotte Vick

    Delighted to know you will now put your considerable abilities into focus in another way.  Your instinct that you are needed in other areas is spot on, so you can chart a different and challenging course FOR the ocean rather than UPON it. Looking forward to catching up with you to brainstorm.  Alaska if not sooner?  I’m in Aberdeen ( Scotland) at a meeting on Census of Marine Life next phase.  Should have looked in on your mum as I came through London.  Michelle Ridgway and I were just talking about you.

    Sending my best fishes-.-Charlotte
    >.-.-.>.-.-.>.-.-.>.-.-.>

  • Michelle Ridgway

    Glad landfall is nigh. Congratulations on your magnificent feat. The biodiversity conference in Scotland was great. See you in Alaska after you enjoy a good long rest.  Michelle

  • Jonathan

    Roz I think you are the most desirable woman I’ve ever heard about , so many incredible qualities and all that fortitiude, are you single?
    If not I pity your husband lol.

  • http://FIT4NV.org Bob Tregilus

    Watching after elderly parents is a life challenge that creeps up on you. 

    I’ve been caregiving for both of mine for the last three years, until Day 54 “A Corduroy Moment” of your voyage that is. On that day my Dad died. Then on Day 87 “Climbing the Ladder of Influence” my beloved cat, Kee, passed. So now I down to one parent who has Alzheimers. In any case, being available for your Mum is very important as both of you age. But if you really get the itch sometime–and want to truly round out your environmental message by rowing the Earth’s ocean–there’s always the Northwest Passage in the Arctic… ;)

  • Anonymous

    Marcie, you and me both!  Your post says what I have been thinking … no need to say it again.  On the other hand, you have inspired a limerick … 

    Roz has a friend who admits she’s a worrier,
    Lauds Roz’s causes because she’s a warrior.
    We support your decision!
    We’ve got no apprehension!
    Now fight for Earth Trust. I know a great lawyer.

    Row with Trust, Roz!

    http://bit.ly/PlanetEarthTrust

  • Anonymous

    Roz,
    I support your decision to hang up your oars. This interview at COP 15 and cool videos http://bit.ly/RozJourney are a few years old, but apropos of your changing role.  I encourage you to fight for earth on land. 
    @1e2133c64455505225bfc8dce956c342:disqus  inspired this limerick which expresses my hope you’ll work with the best lawyer(s) … you know who I mean:

    Roz has a friend who admits she’s a worrier,
    Lauds Roz’s causes because she’s a warrior.
    We support your decision!
    We’ve got no apprehension!
    Now fight for Earth Trust. I know a great lawyer.

    Row with Trust, Roz!

    http://bit.ly/PlanetEarthTrust

  • http://dmbaldwin.wordpress.com/ Dave Baldwin

    You have done more in this short number of years than 90% of the rest of us humans on this planet! Hold your head hi Roz! You are a hero to many.
    Blessings,
    Dave

  • Annie Tobey

    Making an Announcement takes courage! I salute you for all you have done and for the courage to make the right choice and share it with those who support you! Thanks for your inspiration – in the past, present, and into the future!

  • Geoffchambers007

    Roz, I am strangely reminded of  James Hacker (Yes Minister) – “I’d just like to say categorically that I have absolutely no aspiration to be Prime Minister… none whatsoever…. Although, if called upon to server, …one must rise to the occasion…”

    But I can see rowing the Atlantic is rather more daunting than being Prime Minister of Blighty.

    Anyhow, jolly well done for now, and very best wishes for whatever you do do next. Personally I see sox (for the environment). “To row across three oceans you need really good sox. Help protect the planet one footprint at a time” Sell ‘Roz Savage Sox’ to raise money and awareness for world environment. I’ll buy the first pair.

    Meanwhile, super congratulations. You are amazing.

    Geoff

  • Carole Jordan

    Safe sailing into the harbor and a great journey home :-)   A late comer to your expeditions, I am happy to have found you before you finish this part of your life.  What a strong determination you have and I feel sure that you will continue to exhibit this wonderful trait in all of your future activities.  I salute you and all of your supporters and happy to have made a last minute contribution to your awesome exploit :-)   I will remain a follower as you continue your life journey!  You are a great example to humankind :-)   Carole (S C) Jordan, Lacombe, LA 70445 near the shore of Lake Pontchartrain.

  • Norm Grayston

    Hey Roz,  So glad to hear that you are within 36 hours of landfall.  Congratulations, it has been a delight to watch and read about your progress. I think that your efforts are exemplary, and worthy of emulation in our own lives in what ever way we can manage.  I am thankful that your voyage has been safe thus far, and that your best friend Sedna has seen you through the many perils of open ocean rowing.  I hope that your is completed with safety, much celebration, and a pint or 2 with dearest friends and family.  
    Norm of the prairies

  • Anonymous

    Well, I think that sounds great. Like you say, you’ve certainly rowed enough. And, who knows, like you said, after a few years you might do another big trip. But at least for now you can rest and reshift your focus. I think that sounds great! Best wishes to you, Roz!!!!

  • Janis Hatlestad

    Good on you, Roz. Praying fair winds and following success.
    Meanwhile, keep your wits and EPIRB* about you, okay? 

    * Meant as insurance, like carrying umbrella to keep it from raining.

  • BB aka Eeyore

    If I was clever, I could figure out a way to make keyboard characters look like a crowd of people standing up and applauding! You have accomplished amazing feats! Peace

  • KenInNJ

    Roz, part of me saddened to hear this news.  My family and I were looking forward to seeing you embark on the next journey from here in New Jersey.  A few minutes ago, I shared the news with them after reading this entry and our message to you is a simple one:  Congratulations – we look forward to other adventures that you will share with us in the future.

  • Busycorner

    Thanks for taking us with you on a great ride.

    From Pago Pago, American Samoa

    John Wasko

  • roztafarian bil

    So glad to read this! the logic makes perfect sense, but your humility expressed in explaining this so carefully shows your true character. I feel so lucky to have met you, Roz. here’s wishing you a safe landing at journey’s end.

    rozta’ bill

  • Freewind

    You could do another ocean row, but there are so many other important things for you to do out there, other ‘oceans’ to cross, discover, and tell the world about.
    Thanks for sharing your highs, lows, and everything in between with us.
    Have a safe landfall.
    Freewind and the crew

    http://www.sailbayofislands.com

  • Julie Church

    Amazing. Well done Roz. I have been following you cross the Indian Ocean and wish I had known more about your work before. Hongera (Congratulations – as we say in Kiswahili). 

    I am based in Kenya and worked in marine conservation and development for the last 14 years or more. I was based up in the Kiunga Marine National Reserve area (north of Lamu island, Kiwayu bay) bordering Somalia for 6 years with the WWF and the Kenyan Wildlife Services. Whilst there, I saw the children make their toys from flotsam, and started a flipflop art project i.e. getting the women/mothers to make items from flipflops for us to sell in this way kill 2 birds with one stone – collect and recycle flipflops, whilst encouraging the women, their families and the buyers to become more area of the ocean. 

    I, together with Tahreni Bwanaali, subsequently set up a Flipflop Recycling eco-social enterprise – UniquEco – the (Flipflop) Recycling Company turning washed up flipflops into a variety of creations – jewellery, household products, games and things (www.flipflopiwas.com – this website is out of date but we are getting a new one). 

    Why flipflops?? They connect the rich and the poor – every one has a pair of flipflops. They connect continents traveling across oceans on the currents. They take long to break down. They carry a message in a flipflop – a message about making a difference to the world and especially the ocean which is currently the world’s dump-yard. This is an African Solution to a global problem. We still have much to do, but we are making a wee difference. 

    I was wondering if you did find lots of rubbish on the oceans or not. 

    And on another note, we are so saddened and disappointed about the recent kidnappings off Lamu and Kiwayu. Its a real concern to us Kenyans, especially to the local communities who rely on tourism, fisheries and more recently flipflop handicrafts. Well done for avoiding this risk too. 

    Keep up all your efforts even if you don’t row across oceans again. I would love to chat to you more too about the Eco/Conservation side of things and what we can do to make a greater global difference in rich and poor countries. 

    Good luck rowing into Mauritius. I know the boys had a rough time about 1.5 months ago. Julie Church
    Founder & Director

    Email: julie@uniqueco-designs.comOffice Mobile : +254 (0727) 531 301

    Website: http://www.uniqueco-designs.com or http://www.flipflopiwas.com

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    UniquEco Designs Limited – the (Flipflop) Recycling Company, FlipflopIwas
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  • Jonathan

    Roz, I think all the comments so far is equivalent to a standing ovation. Thank you for inspiring all of us to row across our own personal oceans. I hope to meet you in person one day to thank you personally. Congratulations!

  • http://jimbell.id.au JimBellofBelmont

    Good on you Roz.. I look forward to following your blog on whatever your next adventure will be. Also THANK YOU VERY MUCH for your generosity over the last 15,000 that I have been following you for as well as your podcasts with Leo and Vic Phillipson.
    It has been wonderful to walk beside an adventurer as the adventure unfolds.
    Cheers Jim Bell (NSW Australia)

  • Heymissk (Kristian in SF)

    Any idea how solid this date is for the party?  I’m in SF and would love to attend but am supposed to be heading to LA that day.  Just trying to find a way to make it all work.  Thank you for spearheading the celebration!

  • Anonymous

    Heymissk~

    Roz made herself available on that date at about day 140. A lot has changed in her plans since then. I will need to wait for her to respond to me for more reassurance. I would like to offer her time to debreif, bask and rehydrate upon her arrival and cannot give better details than what I have offered. I will update on her blog and facebook sites as soon as she makes contact with me and gives me the thumbs up. I certainly did not want to rush her in any way.

    Unfortunately for now, we must live in an Ultimate Flexibility status… (which by the way I have argued with Roz, that UF may not work if we all are believers in it… nothing would ever get planned:)

    email me and I will keep you in the loop directly~www.OutsideJay@gmail.com  Cheers all! Tomorrow will be our day!~Jay

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Frank-A-Edmands/1275702650 Frank A Edmands

    Thank you for including us on your journey. Wise decision. Great adventures to come . . . life never fails in that.

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  • Anonymous

    Roz & Rozlings, driving from SF Bay Area to Sacramento just now, this limerick came to mind …

    I imagine Roz is getting excited.
    I know many people who will be delighted.
    When she hangs up her oars,
    There’ll be many chores,
    So all stay in touch ’cause we are incited.

    ‘Row’ perpetually, Roz(lings)!

  • Anonymous

    HeymissK~ It looks like our party is setting coarse for the 14th of October (Still a Friday) Please mark you calendar and see posting that will happen on blog day 154 or post arrival day 1 (as there wont be any day 155! :)

    Cheers all
    ~Jay

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  • Naomi (Lanikaigal)

    WHEW!  I am so relieved to hear this.  Now THIS is a weird little note, and I think it’s worth sharing — just for the chicken-skin effect, if you will.  I was just about to click on a random dot on your tracker to read one of the many blogs I missed staying abreast of (due to some personal upheaval in my life these last 6 months or so), and I had a very ominous thought.  It went something like this:  “I hope Roz doesn’t row the North Atlantic next spring . . . it could go very, very bad for her there.”  It freaked me out a bit, as it popped into my head out of nowhere, and I’d never had that thought before!  I think clicked on the dot that took me to this blog!  So you see why I am relieved?!!  Can’t wait to hear about your new adventures … AND most certainly I cannot wait for your new book!  (Guess I’ll have to, though.) 

    Btw, I’ve mentioned this before, but it bears saying again — a collection of all of your excellent blog posts is a book in and of itself.  I know I’d buy it!  

    Get home safely, Roz Baby! 
    xx Naomi

  • Naomi (Lanikaigal)

    Oops.  Meant to type “I THEN clicked on the dot [of your tracker] that took me to this blog.”  As it was a random clicking, I thought the coincidence was more than just coincidence.

  • Naomi (Lanikaigal)

    It almost feels a bit like “cheating” — in that I haven’t been as present of a supportive fan this row as I was on the last one across the Pacific — but I will most definitely be following these last hours as you come into the home stretch!  It is just too exciting!  Such relief must be starting to well up inside of you.  The exhileration (and relief) will come for Rita as she hugs you tightly once you are safe on terra firma!!

  • Nancy

    It’s Roz!

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  • Alastair

    I think you’re making the right decision – there are plenty more new, exciting challenges waiting for you…

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  • Laurie

    You have done so much on the ocean, I look forward to your continued adventures on land. You’re an engaging speaker and I think you will certainly influence your audience in a positive way. Congratulations on your records and success so far! And of course it’s nice to hear your mother will have slightly less worry.

  • Anonymous

    Well done Roz; no longer a ‘speck on the sea’ then? Enjoy your new venture, whatever it may be…

  • Tucker

    If you are looking for a place to gather your thoughts,come to Whidbey Island, in the. Pudget Sound. We have a writers retreat so you can write your future book. The writers retreat has cottages to stay in. The local town, Langley,will provide people to help you. Good luck…tucker@Whidbey.com….

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