A very happy Christmas and boxing day to you all! apologies for the tardiness of this message but we have been so busy attending parties and generally socialising. oh no, that’s what i would be doing any other Christmas but certainly not this one. in fact, Luke and i didn’t even take a shift off which i was very happy about as we are once again chasing down the leader having discovered we were carrying an extra 100kg of sea water as our bilge pump was blocked. what a shocker! at least we’ve discovered it now before it’s too late.
I’m currently lying on my front airing my sore sore sore bum looking out over the sea scape, although directly in front of me 6ft ahead are Luke’s testicles. i thought that the nudity aspect would become normal but I’m just as disgusted now as i was on day one by the fact that wherever i look i see bare ass and genitals. i literally can’t wait to cover up when we arrive, which if the conditions remain as they are should be between the 23rd and 27th of Jan! i do these calculations every time i get on shift. The sea has this incredibly monotonous ability to numb any fast thinking at all. so much so that it can take me half an hour now to just estimate simple sums. when doing radio interviews i have to really try and switch myself on in order to speak fluently as my brain is slowly frying.
we are well and truly used to life a drift and the nights absolutely fly by as we let our minds wonder to far flung places. i am currently planning my next motorcycle trip ‘a journey through the heart of Africa’ and that gets me very excited.
I’m glad to say that our equipment so far (sadly unlike other boats) has held up perfectly. our efoy fuel cell produces a huge amount of energy and so this is one less worry that we don’t have, which all the other boats will.
if i felt like an old man a week ago, then I’ve aged another 10 years since. I’ve almost permanently lost feeling in the ends of my index fingers due to the constant lack of blood when squeezing an oar. i can now only feel pressure. I’m not sure whether it will return after but I’m not really bothered. i do hate to moan about things but my ass is in a shocking state. other than in my moulded rowing seat i literally cannot sit on it at all. i can therefore confirm that bums were not designed to be sat on for long periods of time. I’m upset with myself that it’s gotten to the point that it’s at but with pain killers and damage limitation, I’ll get there. just.
having struggled early on with getting food down me i can honestly say that i love our daily menu here on HMS Maple Leaf. the Tasty beef stroganoff and shepherds pie are personal favourites including porridge with strawberries which i LOVE! the most exciting part of my days are the 5 mins that each meal takes to re hydrate. i can say with total honesty that for the rest of my life i will truly cherish the simple pleasures in life such as tea, being able to sit down, being able to walk and being still. My uncle likened this experience to a prison sentence, the only differences being that in jail you get an hour of ‘yard time’ a day, we don’t, the beds are comfier, the cell is more spacious and the sentence length is usually shorter!
if deserts (correct spelling?) weren’t defined by annual precipitation levels, this would be one. To my eye it is lifeless, although in reality of course this is far from true.
In many ways i hate it out here. it’s boring beyond belief, the wildlife has been minimal, the weather has been crap, the sea is mean! yesterday i was 1hr and 58 mins into my 2-4am shift. happy and dry and warm i had to last 120 seconds before entering the cabin. before i knew it a rogue wave consumed the entire boat and myself. it had literally been swimming pool flat the entire night. i just wanted to get up and yell profanity after profanity. ‘You p***k! why!? Why!? You F******g bully! i was happy and even enjoying myself! F**k you!’ instead i just muttered the word ‘typical’ under my breath. Luke only 45 seconds later opened the hatch to see a cold pissed off hairy wet looking Jamie. ‘Wow, bad conditions then?’ he muttered.
‘No, actually. flattest night so far’ i muttered, still steaming. he chuckled as if i had told a blatant lie.
On the other hand however, it’s really not that bad at all. As soon as you get used to the idea that your diary for the foreseeable future says row, eat, sleep, row , eat, sleep and so on and so forth, life isn’t that bad.
I’ve lost 10-12kgs already, Luke also, and we seem to be eating all the time. It just goes to show the exertion our bodies are under.
i hope you’re all well and enjoying being merry and consuming nice food. See you Soon. Half way point tomorrow!
Over and Out. J xxx