The Voyage: Roz Savage
Day 30: Ocean Cuisine
30 Dec 2005

30 Dec, 05 - 19:58

For GPS position, race position and miles from La Gomera, see

Some people have expressed concern over my dining arrangements since the unfortunate demise of my camping stove.

Worry not, I'm looking after myself and eating properly. Not necessarily enjoying every meal, but that was so even in those now almost-forgotten days of hot meals.
At the moment, a typical day's menu might be:

Breakfast - Wholebake flapjack or 9 Bar

Elevenses - sprouted chickpeas with soya sauce, biltong

Lunch: prawn and pea chilli casserole, made with my Commercial Freeze Dried ingredients.
CFD prawns
CFD sun dried tomato
CFD peas
Chopped dried apricot
Chilli flakes
Black pepper
Combine all ingredients, add sufficient water to cover, leave to stand for at least 3 hours. Serve with a bottle of desalinated water.

Dinner: same as lunch (I make 2 batches at once to save time)
Dessert: CFD blueberry and raspberry compote (surprisingly good)

Plus various nibbles of flapjack, chocolate, biltong etc during the night shifts.

So I'm surviving, but I do love good food, and this isn't it. No matter how high quality, no matter how much variety, there is something about expedition food that falls short of the real thing. To say I am looking forward to some good nosh when I get ashore would be a serious understatement. Much of my day is spent daydreaming about luscious food.

I wouldn't mind so much if I appeared to be losing weight. 'Bulk up', they said. 'The weight is going to fall off you.' So I put on 20 pounds, and as far as I can tell it's all still there. Dammit.

Wind: 12-15 kts, E
Weather: overcast
Sea state: moderate to rough
Hours rowing: 11

Atlantic Row Part 1
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Day 29: Going Garbo
29 Dec 2005

Support Yacht Aurora

29 Dec, 05 - 20:00

For GPS position, race position and miles from La Gomera, see

'I want to be alone', actress Greta Garbo is reputed to have said, and I know what she meant.

Yesterday morning my mother tipped me off that the blob representing support yacht Aurora was approaching my blob on the Woodvale map, and I guessed I was in for visitors.

The prospect made me distinctly grumpy. I had to dig out some shorts to make myself presentable, having been rowing butt naked for some time now. This created two problems - it is a lot harder to go to the loo (ever tried maintaining three points of contact while pulling down your knickers?) and my slippery lycra shorts kept sliding off my alpaca skin seat cover.

But moreso there was a feeling of being intruded on. I've got rather used to being the only person as far as the eye can see.

It was nice of them to drop by. They shot some photos and video which I hope come out well, and it was good to chat with my friend Dan Byles, who rowed in the 1997 race with his mother.

But I was relieved when they left, although the impression remained for several hours afterwards that I was not alone, the ghost of their presence lingering on.

An aside: I have figured out why I feel ambivalent about the race (apart from the fact I'm not winning it). I see myself as an adventurer rather than a competitor, and the way I see it, adventures don't have rules.

Rita Savage's PS: Sponsored mile: Roz will soon reach mile 611, kindly sponsored by Iona Pearey.

Wind: 15-20 kts, NE to E
Weather: overcast
Sea state: rough
Hours rowing: 12

Atlantic Row Part 1
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Day 28 Dec, 05 - 20:05
28 Dec 2005

Navigation instruments

For GPS position, race position and miles from La Gomera, see

We're back in business. Dispatches and rowing now up and running again, after comms glitch and adverse winds respectively.

'At last', I bet they're saying in Race HQ. 'She's discovered what those two big sticks on her boat are for'. The oars have been back in action and at last I'm making what feels like real progress after too much meandering around off the coast of Africa.

I've been row-surfing today, which is a fantastically energy-efficient way of getting some good miles in, but takes a lot of concentration.

The objective is to go as fast as possible by making the most of the wind, i.e. going straight downwind, perpendicular to the waves. The challenge is keeping the boat pointing in the right direction when the waves are trying to push her side-on.

It's great when it's going well, but a moment of inattention and we fall off that knife-edge - Sedna starts to turn sideways and it's the devil's own work to try and get her back in line. A minor aberration can be corrected with the rudder, but beyond that it takes a lot of hectic one-handed paddling to salvage the situation - and while we're side on the waves are coming in over the side of the boat and bursting up through the scuppers.

It's demanding, but worthwhile, and as long as it's taking me in the right direction I'm a happy rower.

Wind: 15-20 kts, NE to E
Weather: overcast
Sea state: rough
Hours rowing: 9

Atlantic Row Part 1
| | More



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