roz-delighted-in-simple-things

Continuing my retrospective on Stage 2 of the Pacific, there are a few special moments that will live on in my memory long after my calluses have peeled off and my suntan/burn has faded. Share these with me as we bask in the afterglow of my voyage…

1. Spectacular departure from Hawaii, escorted out of the Ala Wai Harbor at sunset by a flotilla of outrigger canoes, sailboats, motor launches, and a solitary stand-up paddler. A moment to treasure forever. With a special mention to the crew of the Blue Lady who came out after dark for a final farewell. They would be the last human beings I would see for the next 104 days.

2. Crossing the Equator, featuring a countdown on Twitter, paying homage to King Neptune (or at least his very capable deputy, Squishy the Dolphin), and opening up my goodie bag to discover a mini bottle of bubbly. Then getting slightly tiddly and rambling on at length to my video camera about how great life is – until the battery went flat and saved me from embarrassing myself further.

3. Realizing that I was going to be able to make it to Tarawa under my own steam, when a long-awaited southeasterly wind arrived at precisely the right moment to help me past Maiana and into the home strait.

4. Nicole jumping overboard from the boat carrying my welcoming committee, and swimming over to Brocade to deliver my long-awaited cold beer. Now that’s what I call dedication!

5. The amazing warmth of the reception in Tarawa. Three hundred or so people on the dock, all smiling, and the dancers performing a traditional dance of welcome. Especially after so long of being alone, the emotion was almost overwhelming.

6. The little magical moments in the ocean wilderness that made every day special, the entertainments that Mother Nature provides to entertain the solitary seafarer – sunrises, sunsets, the light of the moon, and the always awe-inspiring spectacle of a canopy of stars and the Milky Way.

And deserving of a special section all on its own, my favorite Rozling moments, of which there are really too many to mention. What a great bunch of people you are! The impression I got from the ocean was that a disparate assortment of individuals evolved over the summer into a thriving community. It was fantastic to witness. You know that feeling you get when you introduce two friends who both know you but don’t know each other – and they really hit it off and you can just sit back and enjoy their newfound friendship? Well, that’s how I felt, but on a bigger scale. It was like a whole party-ful of people, arriving as strangers but soon finding common ground and the conversation flowing. The whole became greater than the sum of the parts. I hesitate to pick out individuals, but If I had to select a couple of laugh-out-loud moments from Roz’s Regulars…

– Richard in Austin, TX, for the alternative lyrics to the Village People classic YMCA – entitled ITCZ

– UncaDoug and his Bimini Bobbity Boobity Moon!

I hesitate even more to try and list the names of the stalwarts of the Rozling community, in case I miss somebody out and offend them for evermore. I apologize unreservedly in advance if I don’t name you here, but I think we’d all agree that special mentions should go to: UncaDoug, Richard in Austin, Karen Morss, Laurey Masterson, Sindy Davis, Joan in Atlanta, Naomi in NY, Greg from Conway Kayaking Company, John Kay… and, of course, the inimitable Texino.

To these and to each and every person who has visited my blog this year, I thank you from the bottom of my heart. I am honoured to count you as my friends!

[photo: Luxuriating in the feel of an ice cold bottle of water just after I arrived on land.]

7 Comments

  • Roz, you’ve touched on something very important and it gave me an idea. Those of us following your journey have indeed become part of a little community. Both the people who post comments, and those who sit on the sidelines and faithfully read them every day. Seeing that we ARE a community, I think we need a proper message forum here on your website, with subcategories and threads. The blog comments are great, but as a community I think we’ve outgrown just this little space for communicating. We could use the forum to discuss and share ideas on environmental issues, your journeys, your upcoming book tour, ocean rowing, etc. I think it would be great for everyone!

  • Hi Roz,
    It’s good to see your blogs again. I am sure I speak for a multitude of people when I say I missed them the past week or so. You inspire a feeling of love to everyone. To sum it up briefly, we all admire the person you are. One cannot but have a feeling of love for you, for the sincere way you are making this world a better place. God bless you Roz.

  • I’ve been moved by your posts but this is the first time tears welled up while reading one. I guess I’ve been too worried and tense to let my emotions show. You are safe and sound! I feel like your success is my success. Well done, Roz, well done!

  • Roz, I just watched Conrad’s raw footage of your arrival in Tarawa. Awesome. Touching. Loving. What a wonderful greeting from the people of Tarawa and a gracious response from you, both befitting your mission — your statement just happens to form a haiku …

    to raise awareness
    climate change rising oceans
    the world thanks you Roz

    Like others who have expressed an empty hole in their day during your short absence, I too have missed your daily blog, and hope that we can continue the dialogue with you and new-found friends. Intended or not, you are a catalyst for a community energized around the joy of your adventure and common concerns. Your providing the spark that triggers conversations on your blog is a gift. You honor us with the freedom to express ourselves.

    Your universal acceptance and outreach to all with both humor and sincerity are traits that I truly admire. What an eclectic group of minstrels, jesters, poets, healers, potion makers, adventurers, advisers, philosophers, critics, a pawn and a king … whether we praised you or criticized you, we all had one thing in common, and that was your well-being. In that we are united. We cheered and admonished, and you set the strategy and made the choices … good decisions all-in-all.

    I have said it before: Everyday I learn something new here. It is a pleasure and an honor to participate. Thank you for bringing Rozlings together around your adventure and your cause. I, for one, am happy and honored to have played a small part in your journey — glad to have made you laugh out loud ;-D

  • Hi Roz, Great video of your arrival in Tarawa, I have enjoyed your blogs, video’s twitters etc, and reading comments from all your followers, I now look forward to the next stage, my day is not the same now you are a landlubber!!! Hope to meet you sometime when you have the time to visit Yorkshire. Looking forward to reading the book. Take care and well done.

  • How very kind of you to keep me aboard in spite of my occasional Devil’s advocacy. I will never lose my respect for your incredible courage which IMO is what has changed you from an idle adventurer into a person who may well assist in changing the world. Well done Roz. May you always live in interesting times.
    T. Texino
    Black Oak, AK. US

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