During my Pacific row I will be sticking electrodes on my body every day. No, not some demented way to make my ocean experience even more unpleasant - but a high-tech way to monitor how my body is coping with the stresses and strains of rowing an ocean.
On Thursday, as I was en route from San Francisco to Hood River, I stopped off in Eugene to collect my physiological testing gadget from OmegaWave.
Click here for the full story, as it appeared in the local press (please note that I was not, in fact, the first woman to row solo across the Atlantic. Just the first to compete in the Atlantic Rowing Race).
I have now taken delivery of all the gadgets I need to collect data for my WatchKeeper Project - which will provide a wealth of information to my website. allowing visitors to follow my every move as I cross the Pacific. As well as the OmegaWave testing station, I will have:
- a Davis Instruments weather station to provide meterological information (with forecasts provided by the Royal Navy)
- a MarineTrack tracking beacon to provide lat and long, current speed and bearing
- a heart rate monitor to provide details of heart rate and calories burned
- a psychological questionnaire, devised by Dr Neil Weston at the University of Portsmouth, to assess my mental state
- plus the usual blogs and photos, and hopefully podcasts and even video-blogs as well.
You will know more about me than you ever really wanted to know....
[photo courtesy of Register Guard]
I read your very eloquent blog about Monday's events - I am most impressed, and I think you put your side of the case extremely well.
I can't believe that the press would be so ignorant and cruel as to make negative comments about your brave attempt. In that vein, here is one of my favourite quotes, which I originally found a long time ago in Pete Goss's book Close to the Wind, although I have seen it many other places since:
It is not the critic who counts, nor the man who points out how the strong man stumbles or where the doer of deeds could have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who knows great enthusiasm, great devotion and the triumph of achievement and who, at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while doing greatly - so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat...
Meantime, I hope this is giving you time to get over your cold.
All the best - and better luck next time! ;-)
Also on Monday I collected my Marine Track tracking device, that will enable visitors to my website to follow my sedate progress across the Pacific.
On the Atlantic I used a similar device - an Argos tracking beacon - but the Marine Track unit is smaller, lighter, and doesn't have to live outside on the deck. It is equally happy inside a cabin, out of my way.
I'm planning to test this out shortly, by fitting it to my boat before I set out with boat in tow to speaking engagements in Hood River and Bend, Oregon, and Colorado. With a bit of luck, the signal will be beamed back to England plotting my progress around the US.
Much has happened to me since I last wrote, and much has happened to my boat since I last saw her.
Last night I arrived back in San Francisco at 5pm. First stop, a meeting and dinner with the guys from Landfrog - who are keen to get involved with my Pacific row, despite being Landfrogs not Seafrogs.
Then this morning I met up with Perry Dillon from Davis Instruments to take delivery of a Vantage Pro weather station, which will gather weather data while I am on the Pacific, to be fed back to my website and also to the Royal Navy to help improve the accuracy of the weather forecasts that they are providing.
I met with Perry at the workshop where Sedna is now living. I hadn't seen her since I dropped her there a month ago. It is rather salubrious - mostly used for the maintenance of helicopters, the workshop is immaculate. You could eat your dinner off the floor.
It has two extremely good things in its favour:
1. It is being provided free of charge by Bob and Kelly, a very kind couple who as a result of my Woodside fundraiser are providing the use of their workshop as a form of sponsorship
2. That sponsorship includes the services of their helicopter engineer, Rich Crow, who in my absence has buffed Sedna to a shine not seen since pre-Atlantic days, repainted her decks, and is refurbishing her damaged rudder.
Time is now getting very short - just 7 or so weeks to go until launch (actual date to be determined by the weather) - but with Rich's help I am confident that Sedna will be ready... despite the fact that she is now on the road again. I am driving her north to presentations in Oregon, then in Colorado, before returning to San Francisco at the end of the month for the final countdown.
[photo: Perry Dillon of Davis Instruments delivers the Vantage Pro weather station]