I am starting to settle in. The first couple of days were a bit trying. I was feeling queasy, which never helps a rower feel on top of her game. And I suppose I was also going through that “what the heck am I doing here?” stage of any big adventure.

On the Atlantic that stage lasted for about 103 days, but on each subsequent voyage it has taken me less time to resign myself to my fate and get on with it. I don’t know if I will ever find it easy to be out here, but it does at least get marginally less difficult.

I have also been getting to grips with some recent innovations on board Brocade. Here’s what’s different from last time:

1. New satphone – the Iridium 9555, with intellidock. I have yet to make friends with my new phone. Or maybe it is the fault of the intellidock, now known on board as the Dim Smelly Dock. The phone seems to turn itself on when I want it off, and turn itself off when I want it on. Today it stopped working altogether. So I took out my trusty old satphone and swapped the SIM card over to it. Whereupon the new phone evidently decided it needed to pull its socks up if it wasn’t to be relegated to a distant locker, and started itself up again, protesting that it didn’t have a SIM card. So I put the SIM card back in, and it has been on best behaviour ever since. Who said that technology was rational?

2. Electric fan in cabin (and spare). Absolutely brilliant. Runs off 12V, keeps the air moving. Superb. Not sure yet how long I can run it at night without running ship’s batteries into the ground.

3. Electric kettle (and spare). Had its maiden outing yesterday with my miso soup. Takes 20 minutes to reach a boil, but hey, I’m not going anywhere. Had used propane canisters with a gimballed stove previously. Nice to be fossil fuel free, as the electric kettle is powered by solar panels via the ship’s batteries. Works just great, although won’t be much use if I catch a fish.

4. Back Country Cuisine meals from New Zealand. Hadn’t tried these before, but today’s fish pie (hopefully sustainable) with cheesy topping (definitely sustainable) was excellent. After 2 days of queasiness and lack of appetite, it was encouraging to feel a glimmer of hunger this afternoon, so I decided to go for it. Am now looking forward to trying out the other meals. Huge thanks to ocean rower Rob Hamill for sponsoring the meals, and to Kara and Brent for the discount.

5. Bracket by rowing position for GPS. I have found the perfect place to mount the GPS/chartplotter, but haven’t ventured to bring it out on deck yet. It would be great to see the miles and degrees tick away, but I will be most in need of the electronic charts once I get amongst the islands (whichever islands I end up amongst) so I am keeping the GPS safe inside the cabin until then. It’s supposed to be waterproof, but I have become deeply sceptical about that word when applied to electronics on a rowboat.

Apart from that, it’s the tried and tested old favourites.

Grooh, maybe not completely over seasickness yet, so will wrap up quickly.

Other Stuff:

Encouraged to make some progress south today. Am now below 1 degree N for the first time this trip. Yippee!

Weather continues hot and sticky. Heat rash starting to develop. Sigh.

Now over to YOU! We’re running a sweepstake on when I’m going to make landfall. Given that I don’t even know yet WHERE I am going to make landfall, this really is wide open! To enter our competition, click on the button in the top right of my website, Go Roz Go Contest. And all should become clear.

Are you an Eco Hero yet? If not, why not?! Please sign up immediately! The world needs all the Eco Heroes it can get. Go to http://ecoheroes.me to join, or to start logging your Green Deeds. If you’re already green, it will give you the chance to share your green goodness with other aspiring Eco Heroes. Or if you need some green guidance, check out what other Eco Heroes are up to and join their ranks. Every green deed counts! I would personally take it as a huge favour if you would join up and start saving the world – one green deed at a time.

And finally, huge thanks for all the good luck and bon voyage wishes. Sorry I can’t reply to them all individually. As I find my sea legs I will try to respond to at least some of your messages. For now, please make allowances for my sea green state.

9 Comments

  • Hi Roz, To my pleasant surprise today, NZ TV 3 news had a nice clip of you and your launch on the 12:00 news report. Nice to see you under way again. Currin

  • Roz, glad you are starting to settle in and that you had a square hot meal! If you do catch a fish, you could poach it, perhaps? But please, we don’t want to hear about a flaming fish fry aboard Brocade.

    If you are ready to think about making some cloud observations, following are the times for the two Ceres satellites (Aqua and Terra) during the next few days. I will update times that change significantly because of your [rapidly] changing location. These are for 0.993N 170.736E from RozTracker about midnight your time.

    Tarawa Time (+12)
    (No Daylight Savings)

    Date AQUA TERRA
    4/22 13:49 10:50
    4/23 14:31 11:33
    4/24 13:36 10:38
    4/25 14:19 11:20
    4/27 14:07 11:08

    For Rozlings who want to know more, Roz is helping NASA S’COOL http://science-edu.larc.nasa.gov/SCOOL/Rover by making “roving” cloud observations. What better way to make “roving” observations but on a fast moving row boat in the South Pacific?!

  • Roz,

    It’s so good to hear you’re comfortably (relatively speaking) underway! I hope you have good rowing all the way. Currently the volcano has stymied my travel plans, but I look forward to the sun rises and sun sets in Europe when I return. Do you think you’ll be out long enough to see the volcano ash sunsets and sunrises that far south?

    Cheers!
    Eric

  • Roz, just so glad to hear it seems to be going so well. Feeling unbelievably sluglike as I sip my cafe au lait indoors as you battle the elements. Thank you for the vicarious adventure and all the good you’re doing in the world. Hugs to you and Squishee.

    Sharon and the rest o’ the Levin-Guracar clan

  • Each morning for the past three days I’ve thought of you as I’ve sat on the train commuting into New York City. I’ve pictured you just waking up — w/ sleep in your eyes (as I figure it’s about 6:00 a.m. or so when it’s 9:00 a.m. here), and I’ve said a little prayer that you set a good course emotionally and mentally for the day, that you’re fortified w/ joy and love and confidence … and that your body parts that might start aching don’t start aching until much, much later in the trip! Thanks for your blog posts, Roz … and know you’re being thought of, prayed for, and cheered on by many! xx Naomi

  • Can’t make sense of the EpicTracker. It’s supposedly yielding HI time and date but either or both is clearly incorrect. Can’t reach them through their site so hope that they may see this here.

    Meanwhile, Roz, it looks as if you need to pull a bit harder with the left arm!

  • Roz, I’m remembering the agonizing towards the end of Stage 2 over whether to attempt to reach Tuvalu and the gradual letting go and decision to head for Tarawa in order to make land-fall, well, alive, and I am awed at how that has freed you to say: “. . . I’m sure I’ll end up somewhere.” and “Given that I don’t even know yet WHERE I am going to make landfall, this really is wide open!”

    I’m sure there is power in that level of surrender to the elements, while having a broader goal in mind of finishing your Pacific crossing by rowing your butt off (quite literally!) and taking us Rozlings along for both the ride, and the education/empowerment that come with it!

    Just wow!

  • So, it is beginning to feel like “Home” again! Great, glad you are well. My guess is that you will be “on the road” 115 days this last run, but I was not able to get to the contest via the Tags. They may have it fixed later, hopefully. Best!!

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