Vulnerable Masts

This really has been rather a trying week. Midweek capsizes, and now the wind is coming at me sideways and blowing me off course, aided and abetted by an ocean current also pushing me the wrong way. I’ve been battling the elements all day, but the score has been Neptune 1, Roz 0.

The closer I get to my destination, the more this matters. Early on in the voyage, a few miles sideways here or there doesn’t really matter. Plenty of time to make corrections.

But as I enter these last few hundred miles, it starts to become much more important. I have a very specific destination in mind (which will be revealed in time for you to follow my final approach to landfall), and to land elsewhere would make life logistically challenging. It’s not so much that there is anything significant about my intended destination – just that there is not much point in Mum flying to Place A if I make landfall in Place B!

Also, if I miss my goal, I will be down to the absolute last of my food. I have enough for a while yet, although most of my favourite foods are now used up. It was with great sadness that I scraped the last few golden dollops of Karen Morss’s lemon marmalade out of the final jar a couple of days ago. All my chocolate is gone. The ingredients for my Cococompote (aka Roz’s Purple Wonder Breakfast) are long since extinct. I still have Larabars, rawfood crackers, and beansprouts which I mix up with tahini, all of which are tasty and healthy and nutritious, but just, well, rather brown. I shall be very glad to have a good square meal, possibly involving a very un-eco-friendly amount of protein, when I make landfall.

Still, not much I can do about it until the wind changes. As I near the end of this Eat-Pray-Row voyage, all three activities are much on my mind!

Other Stuff:

I hear that our appeal to raise Mum’s air fare is going great guns – thank you hugely to all who have chipped in so far. We are so very grateful! If we exceed our target, we’ll put the rest of the money towards a good environmental cause. Or maybe a massage for my poor long-suffering shoulders, and after that an environmental cause. Would that be acceptable?!

Thank you for your concern over my capsize. I actually had two this week. I don’t get too fazed by capsizes these days. I usually just swear mildly and set about putting things to rights. I don’t like to make too much fuss about them in case somebody decides to call out the coast guard to rescue me, as happened in 2007, much against my will.

However, to give due respect to the rowers featured in the videos on YouTube that Jay mentioned, showing them to be somewhat traumatised by capsizes, I will say that doing a 360 is not much fun and can cause significant damage – although after all these years I know to keep things well stowed to minimize breakages. The toll this week was chiefly objects that cannot be stowed safely inside cabins due to size or function: two oars, VHF antenna, Sea-Me antenna, and a bucket. All now fixed or replaced. As you correctly surmise, duct tape much in evidence, and a few cable ties. I am really now more than ready to make landfall. Roll on that happy day!

Thanks for your comments about my Bag It blog. A note on paper vs plastic bags – paper is better, but still far from perfect. It is heavier, so requires more CO2 to transport to stores, it comes from trees, and it can take a long time to biodegrade in landfills due to the super-compression of trash that eliminates the air needed for biodegradation to take place. So all the more reason to take your own reusable bags to the store, please!

Quote for the day: “Beyond talent lie all the usual words: discipline, love, luck – but, most of all, endurance.” (James A. Baldwin)

Photo: Near San Francisco: Shows how vulnerable the masts are.

We have now raised $3716 to bring my mother out to see me arrive. Huge thanks to all who have contributed so far. To make a donation, visit our fundraising website Send Rita To See Roz.

Sponsored Miles: Gratitude to a large number of sponsors today. Leslie Layton, Stephanie Batzer, John Griffin, Lynn Robb, Brian Smith, Tamara Fogg, Hans Verwey, Julian Gall, Karen Morss, Jennifer Bester, Kamas Industries, Gillian Colledge; and from the list of those who sponsored miles beyond Roz’s destination: Thomas Heavey, Margaret @ Green Drinks, Nick Perdiew, Wayne Batzer, Louis Girard, Doug Grandt, Chris Lynch, Linda Leinen, Peter Bromley, Megan Lutz, Aimee Devine, Richard Miller and Stephanie Batzer.


  • Dear Roz,  
         So sorry to hear you are doing 360s out in the middle of the ocean and that your equipment has been damaged. So glad to discern from your log that your spirits have not been damaged along with it.  Also good to know you were able to make repairs.  Duct tape and wire ties are what holds the universe together.  It is good to know so many people around the world are pulling for you by sending good thoughts and prayers your way.
         Have you been able to see which way the current is going by noting the color of the water or by something floating by Sedna like you can see a squall or wind moving across the waters?  Seen the green flash yet?  Watched a few YouTube videos but could not see much.  My Ukrainian friend has seen it a few times.

    Row Roz Row,       Stephen

  • Roz, I think a full-body massage is very much deserved and that your financial supporters would be completely in favor of that. I hope you have some good luck with the currents and wind soon.

    We’re off today to take a farm class with instruction on animal husbandry, such as hoof trimming and giving vaccinations. It’s a lovely early-fall day here.

    Michelle has finished her comp questions for her Ph.D. and has her oral defense Wednesday after next. Hoping to do a celebration for that.

    Sending good karma and wishes your way.


  • Roz, I too am ready for you to be safe on dry land!!  And I am sure everyone
    would be thrilled if there is enough left over in the “fly Mum” funds for you a
    massage and your favorite beer!  lol

  • Karen Morss’s marmalade is great, i have a bit left in my fridge that i will have on toast in Roz,s honor
    There was a tragic accident at the Reno Air Races that did not involve Karen or Dave or thier crew directly. A racing pilot and 8 people lost thier lives when he crashed into the crowd. The races were canceled and Karen , Dave and thier crew are safely home.

  • Roz, would love to use continental frequent flyer miles to help Rita make it to Mumbai, hope you can share info soon. Chin up, oars out and Sedna behave.

  • Roz, I am glad the Rita fund is close to completion. Following Rita’s trip and your massage, I am sure everyone will be in favor of having any excess applied toward your expenses.


  • Roz, great wonderful travel. Loved following you. I will get on regular pc to donate. I almost feel as though we should be there when you reach land.

  • Hey Roz,
    Glad you are weathering the vagaries of the Indian Ocean with such pluck and resolve.  I stand in awe of your determination, planning and the work of your support team, to again cross another ocean.  Way to go, Roz. Proud of ya…. Norm of the prairies

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