Sunday, August 09, 2009

Day 77 - Happy Talk

The ocean and I had serious words tonight. Well, actually, I suppose I
did most of the talking. And it was not Happy Talk – so much for South
Pacific, the musical, from which the song comes. In fact it was very
Unhappy Talk.

I won't repeat it here, as it was mostly unrepeatable, but it was words
to the effect that I'm tired of having to fight so hard for every degree
of latitude, and it would be really nice if for a change I could make
progress and actually hang onto it instead of being pushed so far back
that even if/when the conditions become favorable again it's going to
take me days to make up for the ground I've lost. Having been within 13
miles of the line of latitude at 2 degrees North, I'm now almost all the
way back up to 3 degrees North. By rowing standards that is a long, long
way to re-row.

I try to tell myself that these are just imaginary, man-made lines of
latitude, and aren't really important, but psychologically it would be
quite tough to cross back over 3 degrees North – in the wrong direction.
I have the lines of latitude written up on a writeboard in front of my
rowing position, and I cross them out as I pass them, like the Count of
Monte Cristo marking off his days in prison. I'd hate to have to
un-cross a number.

In keeping with the recent theme of the Law of Attraction and positive
thinking, I had decided to give vocal vent to all my frustration, and
let the ocean know just exactly the kind of improvement I expected to
see in its behavior from now on. For my part I would stop obsessing over
the numbers on my GPS and start enjoying the ride – but I would enjoy it
a lot more if it was taking me in the right direction so I can make
landfall and start getting on with all the very interesting and exciting
things I've got lined up for the rest of the year, thank you very much.

[photo: a turtle that popped up to say hello this morning]

Other Stuff:

THANK YOU, ROZLINGS!!! You are all wonderful, generous, lovely,
supportive people and I love you all. Okay, so my love might be somewhat
financially motivated, but whatever, I still think you're all GREAT!
This outburst of love and affection has been prompted by your amazing
response to my plea for help with raising money so we can bring Conrad
the Filmmaker out to Island X to record my arrival and interviews with
locals on the subject of climate change. We had an offer of $2,500
provided we were able to match that sum with donations from elsewhere.

And, in the space of JUST 48 HOURS we have achieved just that! We were
halfway by this time yesterday, and I've just received an email from
Nicole my program director to let me know that today we reached our
target. So, in addition to yesterday's thank yous, I'd like to express
my gratitude to:

Mark Scarpa, Kenneth D Scott, Chialing Jolly Young, Jane Heritage, Eric
Kauzmann, Patricia Luebke, William Mosley, Robert Locher, Susan
Patterson, Naomi Durkin, Jeffrey King, Richard Cort, Anthony Swift
(especially!), Barbara Henker, Claire Winston, Anna Sonderegger, Roger
Mercier, Eric Mccallum and Mylene Paquette.

If you intended to contribute but hadn't got around to it yet, donations
are still most welcome. My satellite phone bill (voice and data) is
likely to be over $10,000 for this stage of the row. Data uploads form
the greater part of this bill. To upload a blog with a photo costs about
$15, to record a podcast about $45, and to upload the short video
segments for my RozCasts on YouTube is closer to $80. At the moment
funds are getting very low, but with a bit of help we can keep the Roz
Show on the road (or on the row!).
Thank you also for all the big Rozling hugs winging their way across the
Pacific waves to me to console me after a tough day yesterday. Hugs back
to you too. And please send some more today because it has been another

I really enjoyed reading the responses to my blog yesterday about my
eco-epiphany. I'm glad that the idea resonated with so many of you. When
it came to me it had the feeling of something special, like one of those
Big Ideas that comes from outside yourself (like my initial idea to row
across oceans, in fact). I'll be including the idea in a speech that I
hope to be giving later this year (details coming when confirmed – but
it would be the most important speech of my life so far if it happens),
and it will also form part of the book that I'm planning to write in the
early part of next year – a very personal take on sustainability and the
future. I've copied your comments into my working documents so I can
refer back to them later. Thank you!

Thanks to Captain Phil Renaud for the lovely message. Great to know that
you're following – and congratulations on your own great efforts to
preserve our oceans.

UncaDoug – Fallen Leaf Lake sounds absolutely gorgeous, and your
description has got me pining for dry land! I hope you have a great
time. I'll miss your comments though, so hurry on back! BTW, I think I
can see the Southern Cross, even though I'm not in the southern
hemisphere yet. Is that possible?

And finally special hello to one of Roz's Regulars and one of my
greatest cheerleaders, the Lemon Lady Karen Morss. Thanks, Karen, for
your amazing energy and support!

Weather report:

Position at 2210 HST: 02 53.961N, 177 02.529W
Wind: S slowly backing to ESE throughout the day, 3-15kts
Seas: 3-5ft, SE, but there seems to be a current that pushed me due
north whenever I'm not rowing
Weather: sunny with scattered clouds

Weather forecast courtesy of

Latest tracker reported your position as: 02 16N 176 22W as of 06Aug

As of Thursday morning 6 Aug 2009. According to measured data, there
have been Eerly winds up to 20kts and rainshowers in your area, which
might help explain your gain in westward longitude. Eerly winds extends
to the Equator then shift to SEerly 0-12kts. Winds will be very shifty
next couple of days becoming Serly 0-15kts by 1600HST 06Aug. Then
shifting back to Eerly 0-12kts by 08Aug 0000HST. Forecast aids indicate
Eerly winds 0-15kts persist for remainder of the forecast period.
Uncertainty remains in the forecast, as previously discussed. According
to satellite imagery, there remains moderate convection with rainshowers
and squalls overhead and to your north. Minimal cloud activity south of
01 00N.

Sky conditions: Partly to mostly cloudy. Scattered moderate
rainshowers, squalls, and possible thunderstorms.

Forecast (low confidence due to extreme variability in equatorial
regions and naturally occurring small scale fluctuations in
direction/speed in the Doldrums)
Date/Time HST Wind kts Seas (ft) est
06/1800-08/0000 S 0-15 2-5
08/0000-11/0000 E 0-15 2-5

Next Update: Monday, 10 August