Today I passed the line of longitude of Hilo, which lies on the western side of the Big Island of Hawaii. This marks the start of the final countdown into Waikiki.

When I did the Atlantic Rowing Race, the race organizers decided to call it a valid Atlantic crossing as soon as a crew passed the line of longitude of Barbados – even though the finish line was quite a few miles further west in Antigua. So on that basis you could say I have already rowed from California to Hawaii. but for me it won’t be a successful row until I’ve made landfall on Oahu, my stated destination.

But it feels good to know I am this close to land. I can’t see the Big Island – I am too far north for me to see it from here – but it’s somehow reassuring to know it’s there.

Today I’ve been listening to Jules Verne’s classic, Around The World In Eighty Days – very enjoyable indeed, and it reminded me of yet another of the reasons I wanted to row oceans. I wanted to get a feel for the actual size of the planet. It’s so easy, when you can jet everywhere at 500mph, to not understand how big – or how small – is this finite globe we call home.

On the one hand it seems very small, when you think we have to cram 6 billion of us (and counting) onto the dry bits of it, and find space enough to grow our food – and dispose of our garbage.

On the other hand, it seems very big – when you’re rowing across one of the big blue bits of it at an extremely sedate pace.

And Phileas Fogg is my new hero and role model. No matter what disasters seem to threaten his adventure, he remains utterly imperturbable and calm, with a degree of stiff-upper-lipped-ness that I can only aspire to.

Other stuff:

Position at 2115 27th August HST, 0715 28th August UTC: 21 46.856’N, 155 20.407’W.

The JUNK was hoping to make landfall today. I haven’t heard the latest news, but I hope that they did arrive and that they are enjoying a few well-deserved bevvies! I’m looking forward to seeing them again, just as soon as I get to Waikiki. Good of them to be my warm-up act! 😉

Thanks for all the love and support – via messages, donations, and votes. I can sense the excitement building as I approach Hawaii. I know that some of you have followed my progress every single day, and I thank you for your interest, your loyalty and your words of encouragement. I have no idea what kind of welcome awaits me on dry land, but even if it’s quiet and low-key, I will get great satisfaction to think of my internet audience celebrating on my behalf all around the world.

Thank you!

Day 94 of the Atlantic Crossing – Rita on her way to Antigua in the Caribbean. Click here to view Day 95 of the Atlantic Crossing 6 March 2006: Antigua Calling – first blog from Antigua.

My sincere apologies to anyone sending a message from the Contact form on this website. While I was preparing to travel to the USA and on to Hawaii, the messages were piling up in the SPAM box. Having just found them, I do not have the time now to answer each one personally. Questions have been sent to Leo, and messages will be sent to Roz. Rita Savage.

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