Late this afternoon I was pulling in the sea anchor, and got quite a surprise. Last year on the Pacific the sea anchor drew in a very exciting visit from a baby whale shark, evidently fascinated by the big red-and-yellow jellyfish-like thing. The whale shark then spent the next 20 minutes circling my boat.

Today’s haul wasn’t quite as exciting, but was definitely the second most interesting thing I’ve found accompanying my sea anchor. It was a big bunch of eggs.

There is an orange mooring buoy, about a foot in diameter, that attaches to the apex of the sea anchor a) to help keep the sea anchor at the right depth below the surface, and b) to mark where the sea anchor lies. And in the 24 hours or so since I had put out the anchor, the buoy had acquired a necklace of pale pink fish eggs.

Admittedly, my first reaction was “yuck”, scientific curiosity temporarily overcome by the unappealing prospect of having to scrape them all off. I tied off the buoy, leaving it bobbing in the water while I pulled in the rest of the sea anchor and its lines, which gave me a good half hour to think what to do about the eggs.

I felt really guilty about removing them from the buoy. Fish populations are threatened enough, without me destroying potential new fishy lives. There again, I couldn’t just leave the buoy trailing over the side of the boat until the eggs hatched, whenever that might be. And it wasn’t like the eggs were being tenderly nurtured by their parents like those of an Emperor Penguin. They had just been laid (in a very inconvenient place) and then left to fend for themselves. There really wasn’t any alternative but to dispose of them. I gritted my teeth and set about my
task.

I was quite surprised by the texture of the egg cluster. I had imagined the eggs would be quite separate from each other. Like caviar. But in fact it was a tough mass, held together by connective fibres, a bit like the white connective tissue on a chicken breast. It took a sharp knife to cut through the mass, and it then fell away cleanly, leaving only a very few stray eggs on the rope.

It dropped into the ocean and drifted away. I watched it go, sending a silent apology and a promise to make up for this sad sacrifice by doing what I can to protect many future generations of fishy offspring.

Other Stuff:

I hope my previous blog didn’t sound too misanthropic. I love human beings, really, I do. I am one, after all, and so are most of my friends. I’ve written more on that subject and was going to publish it as today’s blog, but then the eggs happened. I will post it tomorrow instead.

My poor dear mother has broken her leg – allegedly by slipping while getting on a bus, but I think she needs to come up with a better story. Like “practicing the pole vault for next year’s Olympics”, or “leading the Pamplona bull run”. Terribly inconvenient for her. Please join me in wishing her the speediest of all recoveries.

American Samoa has banned the use of plastic bags. Thanks to John Wasko of Pago Pago for letting me know. He says: “Our island is much cleaner and the turtles are happier.” Another outbreak of common sense. Hurrah Natalie – I loved that quote, so will reproduce it here in case anybody didn’t see it: from the film Kung Fu Panda. ‘Your mind is like this water, my friend. When it is agitated, it becomes difficult to see. But if you allow it to settle, the answer becomes clear’ – Master Oogway.

Vince Perez- happy memories! Wonderful to hear from you, and to enjoy a moment’s nostalgia for the peace and serenity of El Nido Eco Resort in the Philippines. My very best wishes to Leigh, and all at El Nido and Alternergy.

Gregory – you asked if there are any creatures that scare me. Not so far, although sadly I have seen very few creatures at all on the Indian Ocean. As you correctly surmise, nothing can compare with the sheer terror of electrical failure!

Quote for today: What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.
(Ralph Waldo Emerson)

Photos: 1. eggs on the buoy 2. cutting the eggs away

Sponsored Miles:
Thank you today to: Laurey Masterton, Cecille Gannon, Michael Jorg, Bruno Detillieux, Richard Butcher, Gail Brownell, Stanley Miller, Tom Grimmett.

26 Comments

  • So sorry to hear that Rita has broken her leg. Wishing Rita well and a speedy recovery!  Thank you Roz, for keeping us up to date on everything ;-D

  • So sorry to hear that Rita has broken her leg. Wishing Rita well and a speedy recovery!  Thank you Roz, for keeping us up to date on everything ;-D

  • Best wishes to Rita, it is inconvenient as all get out I imagine. The fish eggs were amazing! Thanks for the news!

  • Sorry to hear you broke your leg pole vaulting Rita. Hope you mend quickly. Perhaps you were distracted by Roz posting that she jumped overboard to retrieve a water bottle. I know it makes me anxious when she does that.
    Roz, I’m hoping you pulled in the sea anchor because the wind is in your favor.

  • http://youtu.be/Hzgzim5m7oU

    Heal fast Rita!

    The above link I am sharing for not only feel-good reasons but also to illustrate an “emotional shift” in how the one sees views from different angles. It is a great video (imho) to encourage us to continue to support Roz by finding varied and unique ways that will allow her to spread awareness even further. It is quick and free: Share her insights with your social media groups. Large corporations and entities spend much money in marketing and advertising, if a counter balance were to exist, we should (again imho,) take advantage of it. Share freely!
     
    Row Roz Row!

    http://ellen.warnerbros.com/show/respond/?PlugID=433 🙂

  • Roz, the photo looks like it’s going to be gorgeous in full size. The low-res isn’t doing it any favors on our viewing end here, though. 
    I heartily agree with your assessment of humanity. We’re like an exponentially propagating parasitic virus infecting the Earth. One of these days her immune system, in the form of a giant volcanic eruption, pandemic virus or new ice age or something is going to take care of it by snuffing us all out and starting over again.

    Oh, Rita, I am so sorry about your leg. I hear that your performance in the Women’s World Cup football match against Mexico was fantastic up until you were sidelined, and that you were named top player. Though England’s team is a major force in the game, I’m sure they will miss you. Wishing them and you the best.

    Joan

  • Hey Roz  I have been following your adventures since you spoke at NG Live in Seattle a few years back.  I love your tenacious spirit.  Best of luck on the rest of your journey and best wishes to Rita for a speedy recovery. 

  • Get well soon Rita. Lots of cheese, milk and calcium tablets and vitamin D to aid with healing.
    Interesting news from Thailand toady. Shopping in Chinese Wholesale Markets, Chinatown, Bangkok and a Belgian lady refused a plastic bag. The Assistant commented that she was one of several European customers over the last few days that had refused plastic. He then asked why so she and I were able to explain some of the reasons. I also had my iPad so was able to show your blog and explain what you were doing.
    Assistant said that Thai people were in love with plastic bags but said that we had some good points.
    One good thing I do see is the amount of recycling. At 16 baht / kilo poor people actively collect plastic to earn a living.

  • Regarding last blog Roz, you’ve hit the nail on the head (again).
    Wonder what left those eggs on your bouy?
    Wishing your mother a speedy recovery, and you, an enjoyable voyage.
    Over and out 😉

  • Gee Rita,  I know you’re an enthusiastic booster for Roz, but maybe you should have practiced a little bit more before you tried that high kicking routine.  But really, I’m sorry you got hurt.

    Roz, keep up the good work.  I’m proud to be one of your sponsors.

    Laurey in Asheville

  • Dear Rita, wishing you a speedy full recovery and future pole vaulting soon (or whatever adventure you desire).

    Dear Roz, wishing you a productive but pleasant journey.  Thanks for sharing your adventure with us.  I’m not sure if you heard or not, but Los Angeles County voted to ban plastic bags effective July 1.  Stores will also be required to charge 10 cents for paper bags.  This ordinance only covers unincorporated areas (not cities), but it’s a start.

    Thanks for all you do!
    Pamela Green

  • Hi Roz,

    I hope your mom gets well soon! Glad to hear the knife came in handy. Do you still keep an axe on board?

    Cheers,
    Eric

  • Sad to hear about your mom! I hope she gets better soon. And I bet the ocean dweller who left the eggs on your sea anchor would understand…after all, you’re doing a lot more to help her habitat than a lot of people!

  • Hi Roz, so sorry for Rita I know how rough that can be, heal quickly!
    We’re on a 7,000 adventure across the US to see the country and visit old friends. We think about you every day as we enjoy the luxury of our 32′ fifth wheel camper. If only you could have a few of the amenities.
    We’re in Butte Montana today and visited the World Museum of Mining. While very interesting is sure is terrible the way the strip mining has left its mark on the earth.
    We did see a quote that made us again think of you and your mission. It appears to be very applicable to the environment.
    “We turn looking back to see the broken image of what we were, in our journey to discover what we are”. Author unknown.
    Fair winds and calm seas, Ken and Marilyn

  • Just wondering about the “fresh” fish eggs… were you at all tempted to taste one of the strays left behind?

    • Yes Martha…and Roz…I am surprised that you did not ponder tasting the eggs…after all they were “a gift” from the sea to you…my friends in Western Alaska would have drooled at this gift…whether raw or lightly sauteed…or a third alternative is to “dry them” … they are a great source of heat and protein…may have been the sea’s answer for your cold feet… 🙂

      And finally, speedy recovery to your Rita…no more triathalons for awhile… :))

  • Roz,

    Thinking specifically about your post yesterday regarding humanity and more broadly about what you are doing and advocating brought to mind a quote from a book called Birth of the Charodic Age, written by Dee Hock:

    “It is far too late and things are far too bad for pessimism. In times such as these, it is no failure to fall short of realizing all we might dream – the failure is to fall short of dreaming all that we might realize. We must try.”
     

  • Roz…. greetings and best wishes for “your lovely Rita, data maid ”  (cue for a song?)….hopefully all will be mended swiftly.
    David Church

  • Human successes , like human failures, are composed of one action at a time,and achieved by one person at a time. – Pasty H.Sampson

    Thank you for letting your daily beliefs reflect your planetary life choices  Roz. We learn as you share. A colorful gift .

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