Thursday, December 31, 2009

First Gale With a Dolphin at Our Side

Sorry I didn't update you all yesterday. I've been catching up on a bit of sleep. I've certainly had an interesting few days.The wind started picking up pretty much right after I'd sent Tuesday's blog and topped at 44knots mid-morning yesterday. Which makes for my first Southern Ocean gale.

Ella's Pink Lady and I came through beautifully and I learned a lot about how she handles when the sea's up. There's a good chance that we'll see worse somewhere along the line, but apart from a bit of fast surfing (a bit too fast for comfort!), everything went really smoothly this time. After a while, some of the waves started to knock us around a bit which got just a little hard on the nerves. But one thing I'm really happy with, is what a good job Parker did keeping us on course!

The sea was really quite something. My best guess would be conservatively 5 metres and far more amazing than any of the pictures or how I'd imagined it! The ocean in a state like that is downright spectacular and fascinating to watch, but I think it's really one of those things you have to experience first hand. I'm not sure I can really describe it and pictures really don't do it any justice.

But the most amazing thing of all was the dolphin that swam along next to Ella's Pink Lady for over 6 hours while the wind was the strongest, just as if he was keeping an eye out for us! Every time I'd glance out the porthole I'd get another little flash of fin or tail just as if he was reassuring me that he was still there. I haven't seen a dolphin for weeks, so to have one see us through the gale like that was something special and very comforting!

The wind and sea kept dying off today, so we're making good ground with nice 15 to 20 knots of wind and 3m of sea. It's currently the middle of the night for me but it hardly seems dark as for the first time in weeks I got a sky full of stars and a brilliant full moon! It's such a novelty that I've spent the last few hours bundled up in more layers that I would have thought possible braving the cold and sitting out in the cockpit taking it all in.

With my mind on other things for the last few days, New Years Eve has crept upon me a lot faster than I'd realized, so I think I'll save my New Year's party for tomorrow in my own time zone. But I would like to wish Happy New Year to everyone out there celebrating tonight. Looks like I'm going to miss the fireworks so make the most of them for me!



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Anonymous said...

Happy New Year Jessie! Hope that 2010 brings you the very best!
Bonne Annee!

SaltyDog said...


“The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.” – Eleanor Roosevelt.

I know some of these quotes are a little cheesy, but I’m still a sucker for them. Besides, Eleanor makes a good point.

With New Years’s Eve here, it’s hard to imagine that you could top your Christmas celebration. On the other hand, preparing to sail around Cape Horn is a pretty impressive way to begin the New Year. I read that an optimist stays up until midnight to see the New Year in. A pessimist stays up to make sure the old one leaves. I certainly share your positive outlook, Jess, and will stay up to see the New Year in with nothing but optimism while cherishing the great memories from the past year.

“Here’s to the days of good will, cold weather and warm hearts.”

Happy New Year Jess!

And Happy New Year World…..

Have fun, stay safe and happy sailing.

From Seattle, WA, USA

Charles Dodgson said...

Have a great 2010 Jessica.

Ali said...

Happy New Year Jessica and to the crew and home team as well.Here's to a great sailing year in 2010!!

Ali Brisbane Qld :D

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for sharing your amazing journey with all of us. Your passion, determination, positive attitude and wisdom are exceptional!
12 28 S 130 50 E

Anonymous said...

Happy new year Jessica, im enjoying your blogs, enjoy your experience!
stay safe

Anonymous said...

Hi Jessica and Happy New Year,

It seems that you have had a tough time out there and to read that the dolphin was with you when it was roaring sea, gives me goose bumps. He or she really guarded you. Here we have almost 11 hours left of the old year. It's so pretty with every twig and branch dressed in white. The temp. is -10 so it will become a cold night. The fire works will be spectacular.
Take care and sail on as safe as you can brave girl. And Happy New Year to all in your team.
Ingrid, Tyreso, Sweden

maxine maroochydore said...

Hi Jesse and a very HAPPY NEW YEAR to you, I still think you are the most amazing person and to be out there on your own in those seas, except for your crew of course, you are a real inspiration. How amazing about the dolphin almost as if was protecting you. Everybody now knows a little more about you,as your journey has been on local television quite abit lately,so when you werent blogging I was still able to keep u[p with the latest news. God speed Jess Maxine and Colin Maroochydore Happy Happy New Year

Anonymous said...

Hey! Wow Jess!

I'm speechless for now!

Just trying to get in before we go out and wish you a happy new year!

Thanks so much Jess!

Talk to you next year darl!

Happy new year Jesse!

So very proud of you!


Anonymous said...

Great to hear your boat did so well in the the heavy seas. And to learn that Parker kept you on course through the gale is very impressive. Glad you were able to catch up on your sleep. There's likely to be more heavy weather as you approach the cape. Continued good sailing! - Dave in Chagrin Falls, OH USA

Anonymous said...

Happy New Year from Adelaide, Jess.
Good luck with the pointy bit.
(Cape Horn).

Russell. said...

Happy new year Jess!

You described the sea as something that couldn't be captured on film, and you had to be there to experience it. YEP! How very true. I have hundreds of pics taken during my years in the Navy, but none do justice to actually seeing it first hand. Awesome isn't it. And quite scary too at times.

Stay safe mate, and I'll see ya on the wharf ok. :-)

Anonymous said...

Happy New Year from germany !
great job ,keep going jessica

Kev said...

What you have Jess must be better than fireworks!
Just keep sialing and enjoying yourself.
We're all on your side and wish you well for Twenty Ten!
Cheers, Kev.

Hermann Prinz said...

Hello Jessica, regards from Germany, all the best,ggod luck and HAPPY NEW YEAR for you
regards Hermann Prinz (Germany)

Anonymous said...

Hi Jessica, Following your amazing adventure with interest. Wishing you a safe sailing New Year. Carnt imagine how your mum is feeling with you out there! You go girl.Christine Pt Lincoln. South Australia.

ericinoz said...

All the best for the New Year Jessica. I am sure that it will see you fulfilling your dream of sailing around the world. As an old, old sea dog, even ancient maybe, I can't wait to read your blogs. They are truly inspiring and you are doing a fantastic job. Safe sailing and keep up the good work.

Anonymous said...

A good read again of your travels.
Have s happy new year Jessica, and safe travels to you reach port again sometime in the new year

Kevmeister from perth

Caves Beach Andrew said...

Hi Jessica,

HAPPY NEW YEAR! Let's hope that 2010 brings you the success that you are striving for, and all the benefits and rewards that you will receive because of your success.

Sounds like you had a good time in the larger waves, albeit a bit nerve-racking. You better get used to it as I would think that this will become more of a regular thing over the next few months.

I know what you mean when you say that it is useless taking photos of the big seas - unless you can have something in the background so show the size of the waves compared to it, you really cannot tell how big the waves are.

I have a few photos of 12-15 metre seas, but without anything in the background, it is pretty hard to work out just how big the waves are.

Having the dolphin following you for 6 hours is pretty sick! How cool is that! It must be a good sign showing that you are in God's good hands!

Anyway, take care and have a great New Year celebration tomorrow and don't go drinking too much!

Seeya gorgeous girl!

Caves Beach, Newcastle

Ricardo XD said...

Dear Jesse,
I read you blog every day and I think that are a lot of people to "Travel" with you.
Only to Say "Happy New Year"!!! from Spain.
Good luck
La Coruña - Spain
43º 24´ N; 8º 24´ W

rob said...

Happy new year Jessica :o)) take care

Bluefin said...

Hello Jesse,

Wonderful to hear you and Ella's Pink Lady came through the storm with flying colours! What can I say? I am just so proud of you. This storm was anticipated for so long it is a relief to have it out of the way and to know you gained a lot of knowledge and valuable experience from it.
Three cheers for Parker for staying true and steady throughout and the beautiful dolphin for escorting you for six hours during the storm. What a truely amazing experience.
And now for a reward you have a full moon and a starry night where you can contemplate the incredible specticle of nature and the magnitude of what you have just accomplished.
I wish you, your family and your support crew a very happy and successful New Year.
Bluefin, Buderim, Queensland.

Jonathan@Tooradin said...

Hi Jess,

Wow that must have been something - those 5m waves ! I am thrilled to know that you are in control and furthermore enjoying it ! I am sure I speak for all your "flock" here on terra firma this New Years Eve when I say quite simply that we are so PROUD of you !

I have already decided to travel to Sydney next May to watch you come in and be part of the greatest event this country has seen for quite a while ! I hope many of your "flock" do the same. It would be great to meet all these wonderful people. I am now spending increasingly more time reading some wonderful anecdotes and humorous comments made by members of this very happy community which I am proud to be part of.

Its amazing how things happen to give you that extra boost of confidence. The dolphin swimming alongside for hours.......yes, he/she was looking after you !

Blistering hot here in Melbourne - about 38degC all day but we've just had a front move in with welcome thunderstorms and cool change.

HAPPY NEW YEAR Jess - you will be in our thoughts and prayers as we move forward into a new and exciting year !


Jony the Pony said...

Hi Jess,
go for it girl, we are so proud of you!
Glad you have them albertos and them dolfens with you.
Hope you got a picture to show us.
Keep up them dodgers,
Jony the Pony

Anonymous said...

10.58 now in Melbourne Jess! About an hour to go! Your not missing nothing sweet heart because the world is with you! The fire works will be so much bigger and better when you get home!

So cool that you posted that when you did! Now I can go out and have some fun!

Be extra safe Jess!

Happy new year little buddy!


Mary said...

Good morning, Jess, from Maine.

It's 6:55 am. here, Thursday, New Year's Eve Day.

Glad to hear from you and to read your account of the galeforce storm. I understand how difficult it must be to describe the immensity of the sea carrying you and EPL for the duration of the storm. It makes the swimming of the dolphin that much more amazing, doesn't it?!

The best news is that you report EPL and Parker handling the course really well, that you know more about how she handles in the Big Stuff, and that you're catching up on your sleep. YAY!

One of these days, I hope you can make another batch of scones, topped with chocolate cupcakes, or just chocolate!

Many waves of hugs to you and dolphin-inspired blessings for your continued safety.

Happy New Year Always

Mary, Maine, USA

Milica said...

Hi Jessica, firstly I would like to congratulate you and Ella's Pink lady on getting through those tough sea's just the thought of 5m waves makes me want to throw-up LOL anyways, I want to wish you a Very Happy & Safe New Year, I hope you have some goodies packed for celebrations, and as for fireworks who needs them when you have a sky full of stars, take care and I look forward to your next blog in the New Year, Best wishes Melissa Malic, Gold Coast Australia

Georgia Guy said...

Hi Jessica,

The dolphin tracking right beside you must be a message of some sort and I would like to think that dolphin was there representing all of your blog followers; shepherding you through the gale you experienced as we vicariously follow you around the world.

Dolphins are one of Gods most amazing creatures and I don't believe we'll ever completely comprehend their high level of intelligence. But suffice to say, the dolphin was there for you when you needed it to be and it must have been a wonderful experience for you.

Wherever you are and whatever time zone you decide to declare it to be the start of 2010, know that we all wish you well in this odyssey.

It was great to hear you finally have been able to see a crystal clear sky at night with a full moon and millions of stars. I can understand your wanting to be on deck, bundled up as you must have been, to drink it all in and be suitably amazed by the sight and wonderment of it all.

Safe sailing and Godspeed.

Georgia Guy

graemek said...

Hi Jessica,
Thanks for your latest blog & your dolphin comforter.
Our new Year turn here (illawarra district NSW) is arriving in an hour but I'm going to bed.

As I write this your time should be about the same as mexico city ie 0600 on 31st December. Should be daylight already.

Really great that you're revelling in the big seas & the capable behaviour of your boat.

In 18 hours time you'll be celebrating the end of 2009 & beginning of 2010.
Happy New Year Jess !!!!!
Give my love to your dolphin too.

I sincerely hope he stays with you right round the Horn.

All the best


45° 31′ 0.02″ N, 73° 39′ 0.02″ W said...

Bonjour Jessica,

Happy New Year 2010 to you and Ella's Pink Lady, a great team with the 'Right Stuff'!

Have you given a name to your dolphin escort?

Best wishes again for 2010 to you,to your family,to your shore team and friends!

Stay warm, be safe.

Yeoman said...

Hi Jessica
On December 29th you had 1,500 nm to go to reach the Horn. On January 1st 1969 Robing Knox Johnston had 1,500 nm to go. He predicted he would round the Horn on 17th January, and he did. On the same basis you may round the Horn by 14th January, or a little earlier as you have been going a little faster than him.
The strongest winds he got rounding the Horn were Force 9, 41 knots, with occasional gusts up to Force 10, 48 knots. I have just been re-reading his book “A world of my own”.
On 17th January 1969 he passed within 8 nm of the Horn and in celebration wrote that he “broke out Aunt Aileen’s fruit cake” It had withstood over seven months in its tin magnificently. In his log book he wrote “YIPPEE!!!”.
If father Neptune grants you favourable winds you might even get their by the 8th January, my 85th birthday. (in 1968 I was a member of his support team)
I check your blog and think of you every Day Jessica.
And Robin told me he would watch your progress with interest.
Wishing you, your family and all your blogger fans a very happy and safe New Year.
David, Sippy Downs.

Bob Evans said...

Happy New Year Jessica. Have just watched the early fireworks from Sydney on the TV (9pm for the children) - can't wait for the midnight version over Sydney Harbour. Sorry you're missing them, but I'll bet the stars in your night sky are just as amazing. All the best for rounding Cape Horn and for 2010 from Burleigh Heads.

tashworth said...

Glad to hear you got through your first gale OK, Jessica.
The dolphins are amazing animals - reminds me of the story of Pelorus Jack the dolphin that used to guide ships safely through a certain stretch of water in Cook Strait, NZ in the 1880s. There were no shipwrecks while Jack was doing his job. Maybe this one was one of his great-great grandkids!!
Happy New Year to you and your support team. Stay safe.
Tony, Brisbane

simone22 said...

What a fantastic story about the Dolphin keeping you company. We were just thinking about how you were going and have viewed your blog for the first time. You write well Jesse and we will stay up to date with your progress from now on. Congrats on getting through your first storm! Happy New Year :) Sim and Graham

Georgia Guy said...

Forgot to say

Kudos to Parker for keeping your course true and straight.

Georgia Guy

magpie said...

Seems like when ♣Tracie Lynne Hall wrote..."I'm clenching my eyes shut and praying fervently until you've rounded that puppy (cape horn)..." she knew what was coming.

The Horn seems to have all the attributes of a scary ride. Good to see that your 'Flipper mate' is making it look easy.

l...the Horn...........|||"|""\__
|_Jesse’s_comin’thru __||_|___| <<
...!(@)'(@)""""**!(@) (@)***! (@)

(Sorry ♣Sally I couldn't resist to tread on your turf, lol)
Wow!!! 5 metre waves in an 80kmh wind.
Happy New Year, try humming this to the bluish moon...
(Heading for the Moon -Cyndi Lauper)

I reach out (echos) My pulse begins to raise (echos)
The crashing sounds are fears that never phased
Let them echo off these waves without as brave as they once were
Heading for the moon
Oh look how we ride over the white
And shadows chase us from behind
But just put them out of your mind
Oh heading for the moon
Don't close your eyes or I might drift away
Under the night of never ending shapes
I'll be wishing of the blue
I'll still wanna send my stars
Heading for the moon.
☺☺☺☺☺☺ Cya Next year ☺☺☺☺☺☺☺

Schwah said...

Sounds like you had an interesting few days! GOOD LUCK!! Sounds also like your doing well! Im sure that dolphin was keeping a good eye on you and also to help reassure you all was well!! Happy New Year to you!!

RichieParis said...

Great news and lovely update, Captain Jesse!
Many thanks again for taking the time, and even more in the middle of the night, and sharing with us!

I see what you mean "things you have to experience first hand". Well, you are young, brave, strong and it is quite an experience, lucky girl. For old armchair sailors like me, second hand will be OK, and especially with a first hand, first class, first grade skipper like the legendary Capt J. Watson.

We all love your dolphin company event. Extraordinary instinct of these mammal cousins of mankind, clever and sensitive. Certainly he felt in you a distant relative, and a young one, quite alone in the 50's storm, and he ought to care and watch. There are so many tales about special relationships between men and dolphins... Certainly not a coincidence if he was there during the storm.

You are right, there will be more storms to come and to overcome, but you are ready. Cold mind, warm body, and high spirits, that's the best New Year's Eve cocktail for a navigator. Plus a zest of love brougt by the wind, a nice light provided by Mrs Fullmoon and the Star Dancers. Enjoy, enjoy, you world's sweetheart!
By the Way: Happy New Year with all the best, for the remaining journey's leg as for the exhausting times to follow, celebrations and everything... You migh well regret your Michelin's BIbendum suit and the Southern Ocean's gales!

Best wishes and Much Love. You are a gift!

Lisa in MN said...

Happy New Year! Thanks for the great comments - we feel like we are sharing your experience with you. Stay safe and enjoy the adventure!

Godspeed -

Lisa in MN

Anonymous said...

Congratulations Miss Watson, it is great news to know that you are doing well after the storm. I'm so glad for you. Have a wonderful new year and hope the weather will be the best for you.

God bless you,

Marina from Turin

rod said...

2009 has almost passed, a year for me i would like to forget.
2010 i look forward to. couldn't be any worse, so by all reckoning it should be better.
2009 health problems.
anyway back to you,your crew, your family and friends your avid followers and of course ella's pink lady,may you all have a safe, healthy and prosperous 2010.
as always young captain and adventurer i enjoy sailing with you and look forward to seeing your great photo's and reading your regular informative blogs to keep us up to date on your progress.
take care young lady and i look forward to your safe return.
blackbutt qld

Tillman said...

Happy New Year to you Jessica. Hope you can sleep and rest. There will be quite a lot rough and high seas in the future

Anonymous said...

Best Wishes for the New Year and safe sailing,
Peter, Shepparton

Anonymous said...

well done .pride to you

Anonymous said...

Hope you are enjoying the 'Blue Moon". Second full moon for the month and the last for 2009.

Reading your blogs brings back many memories of sailing around New Zealand and the Pacific ocean(over 23 years ago). We experienced really big seas at the bottom of Stewart island (off NZ south island). 70 foot waves in a 90 knot gale, you never forget the experience or the excitement of surfing down the waves.

Stay safe and Happy New Year.

Pauline, from Geelong, Victoria, Aus.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for your updates. They always make interesting reading. Nice to hear that you are progressing well in your trip. Too see a pod of dolphins is quite an amzing site to see. I recall a trip that ai made on the ferry from Sydney to the Gong, where i saw a pod of dolphins just as we left the heads. Would like to wish you a Happy New year to you and your support team. Stay safe!!!

Anonymous said...

All of us are following you along... sending out prayers & good karma, (just like your friend flipper)... Your strong, courageous & worthy of these challenges... Hang in there champ, we are with ya...
Godspeed Jessiegirl
dan in n.c. USA

Aus said...

Happy New Year to you Jess!!
2009 has ended on a high for you so I'm sure 2010 will continue that hight..seeing you prove to the world that you will do this!! What a wonderful year it will be for you.

Happy sailing and we'll see you in the new year!!

harbinger said...

Good on ya Jess.

Anonymous said...

OMG Jesse, you are one brave and amazing girl. Your description of the gale force wind and 5mt sea just sounds so scary to this earth girl (I'm a Taurus like you). Can't imagine what skill it must take to handle such conditions. Fantastic that you had a dolphin for company throughout this episode, you are certainly being looked after. Sitting out in the cockpit looking at the stars and moon must be just wonderful, enjoy every bit of your truly marvelous adventure.

Bron Central West NSW

Glenda said...

Hi Jessica,
It all sounds very scary but you have obviously handled the conditions extremely well. Glad you had some reassuring company - Mother Nature always provides. NYE fireworks in Melbourne has been upstaged by a huge, spectacular lightning storm which has been going for hours, bringing lots of very welcome rain. A blue moon will see you into 2010 in that beautiful wild place where you are. Stay safe and hang on tight. Happy New Year!

Bruce Watt said...

Hi Jess what an awesome friend you had in the dolphin..He was looking out for you..Sail on Jess, sail on, you have now proved you can do this.

Bruce said...

Wow! What a brilliant adventure! Glad it is going so well. You are having some amazing times and I am glad to hear all is well every time I check. Not long now to the other side of the world.

Keep warm and safe .... and have a happy New Year.

Axedale, Victoria, Australia.

Anonymous said...

Ps, I forgot Happy New Year, and I hope 2010 will see you safely back in Sydney around June and reunited with your family. Don't think you are really missing too much by not seeing the fireworks, there is always next year.

Bron Central West NSW

Helen said...

Happy New Year Jesse!!

That sounds amazing, I can't imagine it even inn my wildest dreams, glad you and EPL stretched your legs and Parker did a fine job too.

It seems like only yesterday you set off on your voyage, time seems to be going so fast and you're chewing up the nm in no time.

Happy sailing into 2010!!

- Helen (UK)

Debs said...


Its raining cats and dogs here...Thunder and lightening which is putting on its own Fire works display.

Its most welcome though after the last few very hot days...

A bit of a dampner for those out waiting for fireworks that dont look like happening now

Wow....thats one totally special experience to have a Dolphin see you thru your first real rough sea challenge. Dolphins truely are amazing creatures....i too am sure he was watching over you and making sure you were ok.

Anyway....its 1/2 hr away from ide better get back to the crowd....

Just wanted to Wish you, your family and crew a Very Happy New year..... Miss Jessica..... This is going to be YOUR year.....a very special Year in the History of all of us following your amazing story and achievement. How does it feel to know that you have such an effect on so many peoples lives? Your Inspiration has no boundaries.....Have a great day tomorrow celebrating with your family ( Via Radio)....ide better make sure the guinea's are all safe n dry....then time to bring in the New Year.

Welcome to 2010.

Stay safe, have fun....

Deb and the Guineas

Galia said...

hey Jesse!

Sounds so amazing!! I am sure the dolphin was really watching out for you, or just holding your hand for the first gale. You are doing an amazing job and i am wishing you... mmmm.. what can i wish you? you are already realising your dream! so i will wish you to realise many more dreams!
Happy 2010 :)
Galia (and the dogs)

Boatbuilder said...

Happy New Year Jesse. What a great year ahead hopefully with you safely home with your goal achieved.

Regards Richard, Sandra, Jordan, Connor and Mia.

Anonymous said...

Happy New Year's Jessica. Wish you a healthy and safe 2010.

From Dom in Sydney

Anonymous said...

Hi Jesse
Happy new year and well done with the big waves. I wonder how on earth you are able to type, sleep & digest your food!!! Any clues would be rather welcome.
Enjoy the 'breather' . . .

Anonymous said...

Happy New Year's Jessica. Wish you a healthy and safe 2010.

From Dom in Sydney

Anonymous said...

1st comment for the night,good luck from Hervey bay

Adam said...

Happy New Year 2010 from Toronto,Canada.
Keep going ,You are very brave girl.
All the best in the incredible journey.I read your blog every day.

samurai said...

Hey there Jess, I hope you're well.
It's great to hear from you, even if it's just as I'm trying to fly out the door to start my new year celebrations, I'm glad I didn't miss you. What a wonderful account of the events you've been through in the past couple of days and I'll suffice to say, on so many levels, WELL DONE! Excellent too that you had the company of a dolphin through your most challenging moments. It's magic how they seem to know when to make their presence felt.
I thoroughly enjoyed your blog today in particular because I sensed such an overwhelming feel of excitement in your words. You are truly in your element now and good, as you said, that you've had a chance to sus out EPL's performance when the wind and seas pick up. Parker too was very impressive, particularly if he also managed the fast surfing bits.
Congratulations to you and your entire support team and I hope everything continues to go well for you as you progress toward rounding Cape Horn, I dare say in about 10 days?? I'm wondering what your barometer is reading right now. Take good care of yourself. I hope you're keeping nice a warm and well hydrated. Stay safe and bye for now...Sam
Happy New Year! XX

Anonymous said...

Hi Jess,

I just read on abc online about John Bankart who is planning to go to cape horn. He is the chief of a Queensland sailing school according to the news. the url is

It says that mr Bankart will try to get in contact with you during his trip.

Hope the weather lets you have visual contact at least. How amazing to see someone from your city after so many days at sea.

Have a great 2010.

Marina from Turin

Anonymous said...

happy NYE Jessica from the mccreddens in mt martha Vic. Glad to hear that dolphins are keeping up appearences, Dolphins are a good omen amoungst sea goers.
keep it up

Anonymous said...

Hi Jess,
Happy New Year
I have silently followed your adventure from the beginning and am impressed by your success to date given your tender young age of 16.You have under taken something I myself would not have attempted due to being a sufferer of panic attacks and agrophobia but you have been an inspiration to me and hopefully others like me by proving that you can do anything if you set your mind to it and be prepared to do the hard yards to be successful in lifes challenges.
I wish you full sails and smooth sailing

windsong said...

Dear Jessica,
What a great sailor! You have now experienced a bit of wilder weather and both you and EPL have handled it well. What a great gift to have a dolphin keeping an eye on you for that period.
here on Tasmania's east coast we are sitting outside on a very warm evening (reached 38 today) watching a most spectacular lightning display to the west and south - just starting to rain a bit.
The big New Year's events here are in Hobart docks with all the race yachts in from Sydney and Melbourne and of course the Fall's Festival (music) where about 8 or 9000 people have gathered for 2 days of head banging stuff! As you can guess I am of a earlier vintage - Beatles etc. If it is raining there there will be a lot of wet, muddy people - all good fun I suppose!
Well, Jess, keep up the good sailing - not far to 'The Horn' now - and have a great new year. 2009 will be a very memorable year for you as will 2010.
We are all so proud of you,
Infinite love, peace and harmony,

Anonymous said...

Hey Jessica!

Well done!!! I'm glad to hear that the storm didn't disconcert you and always remember: "A quiet sea does not produce good sailors..." ;-)


Wendy said...

Happy new year to you too Jess, I have been on holidays with family and when we got back today we got to catch up on your blogs. Sounds like the ocean has been getting exciting! Keep up the great work and what an amazing experience with the dolphin :)
Gladstone Qld

David said...

Happy New Year to you!!!
David E. Boston MA USA

S C Petersen said...

Captain Jessica,

We are so very proud of you!! Happy New Year to you, your family, and your entire support crew.

Fair winds and following seas,

Anonymous said...

There are some amazing dolphin stories told by lone sailors--and I think you are very lucky to experience something like that.

Good going and stay safe.


Anonymous said...

happy new year, Jesse.

Sofia - Bulgaria

Anonymous said...

Happy New Year Jesse

Can't believe I'm the first to wish you that. Just keep going and doing what you do, you're doing so well. Have you named your dolphin friend.

Angela and Zane

workerbev said...

Hi Jessica!!! Beverly here in Tassie. It is New Year's Eve @ 2326 hrs. Almost 2010! We just had the most fascinating thunderstorm come through about an hour ago. We do not get many thunderstorms down here and that is one thing I definitely miss from the USA, I lived in Oklahoma for about 5 years and the thunderstorms there, including "thundersnow", were the most awesome shows of light that God could ever put on display.

I want to wish you Jessica, your Mom & Dad, siblings, your Grandparents (Billie & Tom), your aunties & uncles & cousins, and also your wonderful shore team and Weather Wizard Bob, and the "Blog Family" a very, very, HAPPY, HEALTHY, AND PROSPEROUS NEW YEAR FOR 2010!

I'm so proud of you for following your dream and your very unselfish nature of sharing it with us. I have enjoyed reading your blogs so much and also, reading the blogs of the "family". I have "met" some very wonderful and interesting people from all over the world. And now we add in Cdr Donde. You just make life so much fun!

Well, the Sydney-to-Hobart Yacht Race is over. The last boat, a little 43', crossed the line just a bit before 9pm tonight, over 5 days coming down. But like I said before, somebody has to be last and somebody has to be first. They are a little yacht also so you couldn't expect them to go as fast as the maxis. Just to say they finished the 65th race is an accomplishment. So, 100 yachts started and only 6 had to retire, that is absolutely amazing.

You know, God sends His Angels in all kinds of disguises. Some come as good friends, others as acquaintances; I believe He sent you one disguised as a dolphin. How special that you could look out the porthole and get comfort knowing he/she was still out there with you. Makes you feel not so much alone amongst the elements.

Well, going out on the deck to see if I can see the fireworks from Hobart from there. It was a scorcher here today too, 38C, too hot for me. How on earth do you stand that kind of weather when you are home? I would disintegrate in a heartbeat. Give me 16-19C any day and I'm a happy little camper.

P.S. for Richard Lathrop: Amen, and Amen! These blogs are NOT for us, but for jessica. How right you are and I hope the blog family will remember that. Jessica needs our support - we don't need to quibble amongst ourselves. That will just drag her down, and it actually made me feel uncomfortable too.

For Sam: Good on you, just keep blogging the way you feel.

For Mary,Maine,USA: can almost taste the cupcakes Mary, post one over please.

For Michael(74): Thanks for the neat words. They made me feel really good. Smiling even :-))

FOR THE REST OF THE BLOG FAMILY - Love you all and hope you have a safe New Year.

Beverly & Andrew Penney, Bridgewater, Tasmania

H A P P Y N E W Y E A R!!!

Anonymous said...

Happy New Year Jesse! Well done on managing your first piece of serious weather in such a calm and professional way. Would love to see some pics.
With 38 degrees here today I am jealous of your cool weather.
Say hello to your dolphin friend (a tour guide supplied by Neptune perhaps?)
Thinking of you every day and very proud of what you are accomplishing.
Fair Winds.
Mel and family.

cowboychincs said...

Dear Jessica... you wont miss the fireworks... just look up... you will have the best seat in the crowd... best wishes for you in 2010, we are very proud of you and are looking forward to every new blog. Keep checking the little things... those are the ones that will sneak up on you. Name the dolphins and start talking to them... they are there for a purpose.

Be safe and have a great New Years Eve Party... Grandpa Jerry in South Carolina, USA.

Anonymous said...

Happy New Year Jess! t will the year that you are sucessful in circumnavigating the world single handed - A year you will never forget for the rest of your life. I am praying for your success. God bless you. Bruce

Andrew Kot said...

Captain Jess,

I simply cannot stop admiring you! You gave yet another cool, restrained emotionally, yet true description of your "baptism" with rough Southern Ocean.

Do not worry about finding right words now, you have to focus on your job. When you finally sit down to write your book, all the memories will bring right words. I am sure, because you are so sincere.

I will drink a toast to you, your Mum, Dad and yourr Grandparents wishing you all the best in the exiting New 2010 Year,

Fair winds and take care

Andrew - Melbourne, Aussieland

Anonymous said...

Happy New Year Jesse! What a pounding you took in that storm - do hope you don't have to confront many more of them! How wonderful to have the reassuring company of the dolphin throughout the worst of the gale. You are doing marvellously....immense congratulations!

Anonymous said...

Hi Jesse,family,support crew and
fellow comment friends,

Here's hoping 2010 will be a great one for you all.One thing you have all taught me is that through combined enthusiasm and effort anything is possible if you only believe it to be so.
What an INSPIRATIONAL start to 2010!!Well done Jessica and all.
I'm just loving your dolphin friend joining your journey.How amazing!!
Thank you for the great blog entries.
Sally in Melbourne by the very stormy Bay

Sergio (Venezuela) said...

Magic description of the sea and the dolphin...!!! I am sure it was Neptune who sent a New Year's gift for you only.

So, it's until next year Jessica...

All the best

Sergio (Venezuela)

Di said...

Happy New Year Jessica. Keep up the great work.
Di, Mackay Qld

Bengt said...

You write that you can't describe the sea, but your description is quite amazing! Today's blog is simply great! I would like to wish you a great and happy new year. I assume you are in time zone -6, so I will set my alarm clock at 7AM my time, your midnight and think about you. /Bengt I Larsson, Sweden

pagepne said...

Happy New Year Jessica! We are getting ready for a big snowstorm here in Maine. The predictions vary from a big northeaster to just a couple of inches of snow. Does that sound like the forecast going into the Horn? Prepare for the worst but never quite sure what you'll get!
Have a great New Year and safe sailing.
Greg from Maine

Anonymous said...

Hi Jess, Happy New Year From shane and family in the lovely NZ.

Good to hear everything is all good and shipshape.
Lucky girl having your very own dolphin as a guide.
Take care and I look forward to reading your next post.

Go Girl!!!!!!!!
Shane. New Zealand

carole (Mackay) QLD said...

Happy New Year Jess.
I was in awe reading your description. It sounds as tho last night was really spectacular. Great to hear you and EPL came through with flying colours. The dolphin was your guardian angel like you said reassuring you, and making sure you got thru the storm ok. Great stuff and a good opportunity to see how Parker handled it. Well done Jess. There will be moments that test your nerves and your strength, but after last night you know you can do it.

Keep checking your gear for wear when you get the calmer periods, and most importantly rest when you can - power naps! energy food, and keep warm. By the way how did the crew go all harnessed in? Im sure they thought they were on a rollercoaster ride at dreamworld.

Keep Safe, always clipped on.
Fair winds Jess and HAPPY NEW YEAR...


Mike said...

So that's where you've been for 2-days, experiencing your first gale. Yikes, reading your blog account gave me sweaty palms! But you and EPL got through it very well and this should be good assurance and experience for the next one. As said by many others, HNY to you and your team. Hope and pray for your continued safe passage and anxiously await your next update. Mike

Anonymous said...



carole (Mackay) said...

Thankyou Tasworth for your description of the dolphin Pelorus Jack... I am originally from Blenheim and we used to launch our boat at Havelock, my dad and Grandad would often talk about Pelorus Jack, and I remember seeing it once as it guided is in at low tide through the skinney channel in the Pelorus sounds.

Small world Hey?

Lets hope Jess you have many more dolphins guiding you and giving company as you continue your epic journey.

Happy New Year also to the other bloggers from around the world and Jesses great support team.

Carole (Mackay), Queensland

noelthebigboy said...

Wow You can have two New Year Days LOL


Perth WA

Cooky said...

Hi Jess,
Great job with the storm.
The dolphin must have been a angel.
have a great new years day.

Clint Jeffrey - VK3CSJ said...

Hey Jesse,
It would've been interesting to have been a fly on the wall, I can just imagine between you watching all your gauges, meters, digital displays and occasionally checking on your newly aquired Dolphin mate and doing the occasional Spider impersonation must of made for a pretty exciting time!

Actually I think its having the Dolphin ride along side you for over 6 hours thats the hightlight of the story here, they are really amazingly intelligent creatures, and so far I think everybody agrees...

But the other part of the story of course is Ella's Pink Lady riding the surf in her stride, it must be a great feeling Jess...

And the your impression of the Sea at 5 meters is scary but exceptionally beautiful!

Well is just gone 12:00...Happy New Year Jess...we've just cracked open a bottle of "Jewel Pink" in your honor!

Good Luck Girl....take that Ocean and tell it that here comes Jessica Watson!....

Well you should see the fire works at Sydney Harbor...beautiful Jess just beautiful!

By the way the ABC at the end of the main News Bullitin played some footage of the main events of 2009, for all of two seconds we saw Ella's Pink Lady starting on its journey to the vastness of the Sea....

It's a Blue Moon tonight Jess, look up at it and wonder, we're all behind you!!!

Cya in 2010

Clint - Melbourne Town

Carol said...

Happy New Year Jessica. We are not there yet as it's still Hogmanay here in Scotland.

You are doing an amazing job out there and you are just so brave.

The dolphin story was lovely.

Take care,

Aunty Carol

Anonymous said...

Well done Jessica, that must have been so scary. Well done also to all your support team.
Happy New Year and I hope it brings with it everything you have dreamed of.
Judi, Sydney.

Anonymous said...

Happy New Year Jess

I was watching a film called "Deep Water" the other day. Its about The Sunday Times Golden Globe Race and the sailor Donald Crowhurst.
The race took place in 1968 and is a sad story about financial problems, honesty, sportmanship and guts.
When I saw the film I was thinking about your achievment all the time. Watch it and be proud of yourself.

Sailingfriend from Sweden

loonyhiker said...

Happy New Year to you too from South Carolina!

Anonymous said...

HAPPY 2010 Jessica!

I'm captivated by what you are doing, and really look forward to checking in with you every day. Thanks so much for all the info you pass along to us. Stay strong and savor every minute of your adventure. It's going to be a fantastic 2010 for you and your team!
LFR in the USA

Anonymous said...

Hi Jess,

I've been reading since you started but have yet to post a message. I'm amazed at your undertaking and execution so far. After reading your latest, I was curious as to what situations would require you to take the helm and drive EPL manually? Does Parker ever get overwhelmed by bad weather, strong winds or big following seas?

Happy new year!

Jim - Chicago

Mike said...


I guess this is another test for you and you did well. It also seems you will have helpers and guides with you as you go. You are doing an awesome job and getting to have a great experience with each day you wake. When you get into moments in which fear make creep in just take a moment to breath and know you are not alone. There are people with you and a God who cares for each of the creatures on this earth including you. You are doing an awesome job.

Mike Atlanta

Anonymous said...

Happy New Year Jessica! I've followed your journey since you began but this is my first time leaving a comment. How wonderful the dolphin kept by your side to cheer you on! Here in Florida we get a bit used to them, lovely though they are. Your writing is a gift; thank you so much for brightening my day and giving me a reason to get up every morning. God Speed, my dear. said...

Happy New Year, Jessica!

I've been following your progress and your blog since you began, and just wanted to pop my head in and say hello.

What underscored just how impressive the seas were was the occasional typo...must've be quite busy out there.

Glad to hear you had a little company during the storm...if it were a she-dolphin, I suggest christening her "Gail." ;-)

Happy New Year from the capital of Minnesota in the upper central part of the US, where it's currently zero degrees fahrenheit and the "seas" are calm. Well, completely frozen solid.



HAWKEYE said...


Hi Jesse - what a wonderful description of the events of the past day or so. Your canvas of words paints the scene beautifully and you seem, as should be the case, proud of the way you have handled things over the period in question.

That dolphin was a good friend and I thank it for the role it played for you out there on what was a day of dealing with novelty like never before. I'm proud of you and what a beautiful girl you are. It's good to know you have been sleeping OK and your head has been in the right place - spot on - and that has helped you through this period. The early preparation obviously helped as well.

Well precious one stay 'cool' as it all seems to be coming together very well but we are not going to be complacent are we?? Please re-focus the head and the New Year will bring you great things but you must think safety first to make the most of what great things lay ahead for you. Take care darl congratulations and god bless.



Anonymous said...

Hi Jessica,
This is my first blog but I have been reading your very interesting blogs since your departure from Sydney. As are so many people, I'm very proud of you and am amazed at your maturity and attitude with all the challenges you've faced so far. Just being on a boat out in the middle of nowhere and not seeing anyone for weeks is truly amazing and shows strength and tenacity in you. Reading about your dolphin visitor reminds of your other special visitors like Silly perching on EPL and flapping about for a few hours when the days were a bit gloomy and your albatros friend that circled your boat for hours on Christmas Day. Although I am in awe, I am not surprised that God sent His creatures to reassure you when you felt a bit glum and help you celebrate His Christmas and comfort you when the waves got big and threatening. He has you on His radar and is showing you that He's right there with you to look after you. I love to read about your journey. Like so many others, I feel that I'm right there with you and experiencing things I would never experience in my life. I also love the way you write. Your personality shines through in every blog and you are open and honest about your feelings. My husband and I pray for your safety and success regularly. Take care.
Love Jan, Toowoomba

Anonymous said...

Happy New Year Jessica. You Rock! - JS.

Claudio Silva said...

Hi, Skipper! Glad to hear you're safe and that weather is clear now for you and EPL. And yeah, certainly that dolphin is the material form of all the love and care and prayers your family, your team and countless people all over the world send you everyday. I know I'd enjoy some companhy in a 5-metre sea, like "if that guy is swimming here it must be getting better soon". Just keep safe warm and clipped and soon you'll be crossing the Horn and sailing in warmer waters. Have a Happy New Year and enjoy the stars and the moon. We still have 12 hours to go in 2009 here, but when time comes I'll launch a small hand-rocket (with all safety precautions, of course) and raise a glass of champagne in honor of young Captain Watson and her brave little ship, sailing over the southern waves. To know there are people like you in this world restores a bit my faith in Humankind. A big New Year hug from Santos, Brazil, for you and all your people back home!

John Charles said...

Happy New Year Jessica and may every good thing be yours in 2010 ~ and for the decade.

Hummer Man said...

Happy New Year and enjoy the journey! My entire extended family is following your progress and keeping up with your sea conditions on

nanna said...

Happy new year Jess,catch up next year,stay safe..
Nanna CAirns Qld

duane said...

Happy New Year Jessica! This is the year your dream will be fulfilled. Sure glad I stumbled upon your story before you were underway. It has been great reading your blogs, watching your videos and seeing your pictures. You truly are in inspiration.
Good to hear you and "pinky" encountered your first gale and came though with flying colors. Pretty cool to have the dolphin escort. Perhaps God's way of showing his guiding hand.
I hope you continue to marvel at all the beauty this world has. May God richly bless you throughout your voyage and well beyond. duane

Anonymous said...

saw u r blog mentioned on cdr donde's blog....I am the captain of Indian navy's tall ship..and used to think I have a tough job till i heard about his his voyage ..........but yours is even tougher!!!It takes guts to do what u r doing.....May you come through with flying colours....have a great year ahead....fair winds and calm seas all the way....


Old Iron said...

Happy and Safe New Year

Anonymous said...

You've got your own fireworks, Jessica: one of the reasons why I've always wanted to cross an ocean someday by ship instead of by air is so that I can see what the stars look like that far from all the light pollution you get on land. I'll bet that it's out of this world. So you enjoy those fireworks for those of us who can't see that!

Mike in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA

Anonymous said...

Happy New Year Jess,

thanks for the update; nice to hear you've finally got someone to look after you =D

Fair winds and following seas,

HL, Helsinki

Anonymous said...

To Blogger Billy, William Watson, thanks for the heads up on Deborah De Williams, she is certainly one brave and inspirational lady. Never ceases to amaze me the absolute courage and selflessness of people like this.

Yang said...

Amazing moments Jess:-

Commendable surfing on 5m waves ;}

You are a lucky one, enjoying the vastness of the ocean, the curvature of the horizon and the dome of the sky all by yourself and a dolphin as friend ;>

It is truly nature at its best ;@

You have a great New Year's party with your Crew and marine mammal friends :~

And a good meal in Chef Watson's kitchen :D

West Coast SG

samurai said...

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For auld ♪ ♫•*¨*•.¸¸♥ ¸¸.•*¨*•♫ ♪ lang syne ♪ ♫•*¨*•.¸¸♥ ¸¸.•*¨*•♫ ♪ my dear ♪ ♫•*¨*•.¸¸♥ ¸¸.•*¨*•♫ ♪ for auld ♥ ♥ ♥ lang syne ♪ ♫•*¨*•.¸¸♥ ¸¸.•*¨*•♫ ♪ We’ll take ♪ ♫•*¨*•.¸¸♥ ¸¸.•*¨*•♫ ♪ a cup of ♪ ♫•*¨*•.¸¸♥ ¸¸.•*¨*•♫ ♪ kindness yet ♪ ♫•*¨*•.¸¸♥ ¸¸.•*¨*•♫ ♪ for auld ♪ ♫•*¨*•.¸¸♥ ¸¸.•*¨*•♫ ♪ lang syne ! ♪ ♫•*¨*•.¸¸♥ ¸¸.•*¨*•♫ ♪ ...


Anthony said...

Happy New Year Jessica from Anthony, Highfields, Queensland

Rick said...

Happy new year Jess!

Your story of the dolphin keeping an eye on you made me smile. I don't know if your religious or not, but I think that was Gods way of showing you that HE'S keeping on eye on you.

I'm not sure if you've mentioned it before or not, but is your cabin heated? I been reading your blogs from the start and I don't remember you mentioning about having heat.

Once again, Happy New Year and stay safe (and dry)


janel said...

Reading this post has been thrilling for me. Having the dolphins with you in incredible. Stay safe and warm and know that your journey is way better than fireworks. God speed, and remember there are many that are with you in spirit. Happy 2010.

Anonymous said...

Bienvenida al mar del sur, desde Chile un abrazo para esta noche, Feliz año Nuevo.
Desde el Sur del Mundo, te estamos apoyando.0. Hector Mejia.

andrewVA said...

hi jess,

you've got a seat under the stars for the best fireworks display in the whole world!!

you're doing an amazing job out there...i've been in seas and winds similar to what you're experiencing (in the south atlantic) and you're right when you say it's difficult to describe.

the noise along is quite enough to rattle ones nerves a bit, huh?

anyway, happy new year and continued best of luck with your incredible journey!

be safe. be well. have fun. stay warm!

richmond, va

Phil in Idaho said...

Happy New Year Jess. And congrats on your first Souther Ocean gale!! I would love to be there surfing down those waves. You have the best fireworks in the world and your own little gray fin fan club!!

Hell of a ride eh girl!

Tom Carpenter said...

You are amazing, Happy New Year

Tom Carpenter

Dreamsailor said...

Hi Captain Jess
Happy new year and congratulations on making it throught your first sounthern ocean gale unharmed. i think the dolphin was there just to keep an eye on you, most people consider them good omens so it just proves you are an amazing person to have on by your side.

I wish you all the best for the upcoming year and i believe it will bring you all you wish for and more.

calm seas & steady winds

Dreamsailor, miami, florida, usa

Dreamsailor said...


i wish all your team back on dry land a happy new year.

Janet Nancarrow said...

Happy New Year Jess,God love you,you are a wonderful girl,take care all the best for 2010.
Janet Caloundra

Anonymous said...

Happy New Year Jesse, I hope you have a great one!

Mike Kay Avon Indiana said...

Hello Captain Jesse, well it seems as thought you are experiencing your own fireworks that we are missing. And with a mascot too! Sounds as though that was reassuring to you as it would be to me, it does seem amazing. Glad that you and EPL are handling these waves and wind just as you have prepared to do. As you said experience is the best teacher, the pics and accounts of others don't really do it justice. Even with that said thank you for your account of it so "we" could be there with you...It was great that your granny and grandad introduced themselves to the blog family and broke there self-imposed silence so a big HELLO to you Billie and Tom! You must be so proud! Well Jesse hope all is still going well and Happy New Year to you, your family, your crew and to all the blog family! Godspeed, Mike

P.S. Well said, Richard Lathrop, my grandma used to say "If you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all." I guess not everyone is as fortunate to have had a wise grandma. Constructive dialogue among family or friends builds, sharpens and teaches. But hateful or destructive dialogue only alienates , hurts and weakens. I am proud to be a part of this blog family and wish to learn, share and enjoy. To all the blog family lets strive to make 2010 one to remember as we go along with Jesse on her history making voyage....Godspeed to all. Mike

Brian Riley said...

Hi! Jesse,


Your description of the gale force winds and the sea conditions made me feel as if I was there, the motion you describe with the porpoise,the 5 meters of swell and wind sent tingles down my arms.
Parker is amazing to have steered you through without any problems, and you were able to learn and understand EPL better in these conditions.
To sit out and watch the stars and Blue moon evolve above,you are very fortunate to be able to live your dream and enjoy all around.
Safe Passage,will talk later.
Hervey Bay QLD

Anonymous said...

Hi Jesse, congratulations to having ridden out your first gale so good and brave. Take it as a good sign for the New Year and for your further journey.
Greetings from Germany and all the best for 2010!


sarge said...

Hey Jessica
Stay safe in your little pink boat.
Have a good new year.
All the best

Lori said...

Happy New Year Jesse, did you see all the fireworks from out there, starting with NZ first, then OZ, THEN you can look around on the port side and watch the rest of the world take their turns - wouldn't that be something if you could? Nice full moon for us all, good start to the New Year.

So glad everything went well for you through your first major challenge, hope Flipper sticks around for any future ones. It must have been a bit scary for you, but you have all come through with flying colours, good job.

Keep enjoying yourself, you are always in our thoughts and prays...x

-Lori, Brisbane

jimmy said...


Wow! It sounds like you had quite a ride. (I'm a little jealous.)

I'm glad to hear ypu have a clear night sky. The month of December there is a "Blue Moon" ( 2 full moons in a month) just in time for New Year Eve.

How magical it must of been with the dolphin following you.

Always following your progress; it's simply amazing what you are doing.


jo from perth said...

Wow Jesse, congrats on handling the seas so well. Isn't it so beautiful your dolphin friend kept you company through the strong wind. There are so many wonderful things in and on this world we live on and I think it is wonderful that you are experiencing so many grand things at such a young age. Well done Jesse and by the way HAPPY NEW YEAR.
I look forward to your 2010 blogs and want to thank you for all the inspiration and joy your journey has afforded me so far. As well as wishing you Happy New Year, i will stick to my guns and wish you Good Winds and Safe Sailing.

David said...

Jess, you are finally in the ocean that you came for. Be careful, stay harnessed up and enjoy your Happy New Year. We who follow you every day can't wait to read your next blog. But, we understand that there will be days ahead when you have to sail and not write.

David Indiana

Rob said...

Sounds like you were really moving right along! 44 knots of wind, how fast were you moving? 5 meter seas! that is amazing. hang on tight! What did you name your dolphin friend?
I'm glad you got a chance to enjoy some stars. Those are your fireworks while you are on the ocean. Happy New Year Jesse have a wonderful day!
Columbia, Missouri, USA

Hunter said...

Greetings Jess, I am sure a few of us would be interested in how you reefed and took care of the boat during the 40+ winds and waves. Sounds like whatever it was you did a good=comfortable job. Well done and more dolphin.

Anonymous said...

happy new year. safe sailing and cant wait to see you back in 2010. look forward to your next update


Hi Jess,

So good to hear you all made it through the storm without any major incidents. Those 5 metre swells must have been really amazing to watch. I know what it can be like, I've been in a similar circumstance in a 14.5 Feet (Fourteen point five feet), whatever that is in metres, Half Cabin Cruiser . . . . . but we were only in Broken bay (in Pittwater on Sydney's Northern Beaches Area) . . . . . So it must have been an exciting, albeit a bit eery, experience: And that little Dolphin ... Wowwww! ... How Wonderful. What a sense of comfort it must have been to have no better A Guardian Angel. I now know that what they say about Dolphins been the known as the 'True Mermaids' must be correct. Dolphins lead the way in front of the Old Sailing Ships and have been known to swim along in front of Ocean Liners.

Yes Jess !! ... That Dolphin wasn't 'Just There For The Ride' ..... He/She "Was There To...AND... Did See You Safely Through That Storm".
Also, where you say every time you peered out the Porthole you caught a Peek of the Tail or Fin, " Wasn't just coincidence: You said that it was like he/she was letting you know he/she was still with you'. Well I believe that That Little Mermaid WAS reassuring you that you weren't alone and that you were in Safe Hands !! " ... And that he/she knew you were watching and was doing just that, letting you know he/she was still there.

So Jess, why don't you give your New Little Guardian Angel A Name?: How about the Obvious 'FLIPPER' ... because 'Flipper' was always Saving people and keeping a Watchful Eye on the boys, just like your DOLPHIN FRIEND was keeping watch on you. I think 'FLIPPER' is appropriate because you have already named 'Parker' after 'You Know Who'.

Most importantly jess, I'm sure 'FLIPPER' Is STILL WITH YOU, and I'm Sure you'll be seeing More of your Guardian Angel.

Well Jessica, 'HAPPY NEW YEAR' Australian Time ... and I'll Remember you when you celebrate in Your Current Time Zone.

Oh! ... and 'Yes' ... The FIREWORKS WILL be More Spectacular WHEN You Arrive Home in Australia.

Have A Safe and Happy Trip ... But Most of All HAVE FUN.

"You CAN And WILL Do It Jessica Watson !!!"


k878 said...

Happy New Year Jess!!!! We hope 2010 brings all your wishes to you, and lots more Safe Sailing!!! Havent been on line for a week or two but its good to read your blog again. Hope u had a good chrissy!!
Best Wishes
Kate & Family

Sven said...

Hi Jessica,

thanks for the update, good to hear that you have managed your first gale safely and good to know you're fine.
You are still in the same dayzone (six hours behind us here in Europe), so enjoy New Years Eve and, later, the stars will have a special 'firework' for you.

You can definitely be proud of what especially you and your crew ashore have achieved in 2009.

I'm glad that you let us share your thoughts and experience with you.
Instead of reading the newspaper I'm regularly checking what you and your blog-family is writing - it's just fantastic here!!

My thoughts are with you, Jesse, stay safe 'n warm, my best regards to Parker and the dolphins,

please feel embraced,

Sven, Hamburg (Germany)

Anonymous said...


Lut said...

Happy New Year to you on the ocean .... sail safely and take care !

Lut said...

Happy new year and a good health to your family and supporting team too !

Cheers from Luxembourg

Anonymous said...

You will never truly understand the impact you are having on people around the world. Each of us following your blog are touched, moved, encouraged, inspired and in some cases envious. On this New Year's Eve, in some part because of you, I am extremely optimistic and looking forward to 2010

A New York sailor

BillaBong said...

Dolphins are fascinating creatures and that one obviously liked pink:)

10M boat in 5M waves...bobbin in the tub. Sounds like you're about to earn your stripes because they'll get bigger the closer you get to the Drake.

Be smart and do what's right for your situation. We're out here living vicariously through your adventure but don't let that cloud your judgment.

Happy New Year when you get there. We'll raise a glass to you in Jacksonville, FL, which looks to be 10PM your local time. bab

Anonymous said...

44 knot winds and 5 m waves are a little rough alright Jesse. You handled things nicely and having a dolphin along guarding you is very comforting. I am sure dolphins are part human as in most instances they always seem to turn up when things become rough. EPL seems to be handling the rough stuff very nicely too! However, it takes a good skipper to keep things going right. Keep up the good work and as always smooth safe sailing..Russ Calgary

Ricky said...

Happy New Year Jesse!

We were at the Gold Coast for the fireworks - I would have swapped a 2 min glimpce of that dolphin for all the fireworks in the world.

Keep it up - lovin the blogs and wishing you all the best for the next few months - it's really gonna fly in!


Anonymous said...

Happy New Year Jessica! We loved hearing about the dolphin keeping you company! You're getting so close to the Cape! Good luck and stay strong!

~Two in TX

Anonymous said...

Happy New Year, Jessica!
Only a fair wind in the new year!

Orel, Russia.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing your adventure with us! You do such a great job of painting a picture in my mind as I read. I really hope you are able to put this adventure into a novel some day! Congrats on making it through those rough seas! Happy New Year! From your fans in the Black Hills of South Dakota, USA who are wishing we could have been that dolphin yesterday!

hezakiah299 said...

12-31-09 @ 10:43
For William Watson:
Hi Bill,
Read your post that you couldn’t find Jessica’s Grandparents letter. Unless you’ve already got it, here it is.

Anonymous said...
Hello Skipper Jess! Special one!
Granny & Grandad W here. Will talk to you later, but just now need to talk to your friends!

We felt we had to break our self imposed blog silence to say a "BIG HELLO" to all your amazing blog family.

Thank you all, each and everyone of you, --- thanks to the 'regulars' and the first timers too, for your support, poems, pictures, advice, humour and caring of our Jess. All of your names are becoming so familiar and its a bit like meeting with old friends now as we log on and read your latest greetings to Jess.

We wonder at the affection revealed. We want to say how wonderful it is to know so many people from around the world are following this journey with prayers and good wishes. God Bless you all!
Billie & Tom from Waikanae NZ
December 30, 2009 7:05 AM

I enjoy reading your posts, keep ‘em coming.
Michael (74) from Kingwood, WV

el grande said...

excellent job! that dolphin was sent by all of us landlubbers - hope that doesn't constitute an "assist" in any way.

your baptism in the Southern Ocean is now done and you are ready for the next bit of tricky sailing. Learning from the first gale was just what we would have expected of you - good on ya.

stay warm and safe! keep checking that equipment when you can!!

Anonymous said...

Happy New Year Jessie. We continue to follow your amazing adventure and wish you all the best in 2010.
The Harmon Family.
Portland Oregon USA.

Anonymous said...

I was late for christmas, but I'm on time to wish you a Happy New Year. My people were Marshfield MA people (I can still visit the house where my nth great-grandfather lived 350 years ago) and I've always liked to watch the ocean during a good blow as long as I'm on the land side and not the ocean side.
5 degrees F., 14 inches of snow last week and more coming down now...

Anonymous said...

Hi Jesse:

I remember my first full gale at sea, at about your age, managing the tiller on a Newport 30 with sustained winds of 45-50 knots, with gusts to 70, and 15-20 foot (4.5 to 6 meter) seas. Green water coming over the deck.

And I loved it!

You're right, there is no way to describe it.

We are all so proud of you!!!!!

Bill in Boston

trish said...

Happy 2010 to you and EPL (and the motley crew of course).. my wish for you is EVERYTHING you wish for YOU Jesse!! Our fireworks here in Cairns (it rained of course lol) were spectacular and my thoughts turned to a special young lady out on the high seas churning up those nautical miles under the keel of a special pink yacht wayyyyyyyyyy out there!! God Bless you and keep you safe and also blessings to the shore crew.
I will include the rest of the crew that are out there with you - us people who care deeply about a special young lady called Jessica Watson. P.S. I just love the fact that you have handled 40plus knots of wind with such confidence!! You Go Girl!!
Love Trish (CYC) Cairns

Peter and Sally on the Gold Coast said...


Well Jess first big storm and a dolphin to match, well done.

Maybe all those messages of God Speed are starting to pay dividends

To all the shore crew and your parents Happy New Year 2010

Stay safe and warm

God Speed
Peter and Sally

Christopher and Tara said...

Happy New Year Jess! We have been following your trip since you left home. We send you the best wishes and CONGRATS on being the youngest ever to sail around the world! We know you will succeed!
Cheers to you and yours from Texas!

Anonymous said...

Happy new year and wishing you smooth seas on you continued journey.

Anonymous said...






Anonymous said...

Happy New Year - hope its great :)

~j~ said...

Wow!.... incredible, living here in Santa Barbara we have our local dolphin crews that the community enjoys year after year, they bring such joy and entertainment to all of us and it's no surprise to hear of your escort during your first gale!
Really brought a smile to my face.
Happy New Year to you and your family Jessica. Please tell your Mum that every time I read your post I say a little prayer for her too, you both are brave, courageous and strong women.

Mr. Canadian said...

Happy New Year Jesse all the best to you in 2010. Sounds like you have a garden angel with you when things get ruff. Must have been very cool to have a dolphin swim along side you like that. Thanks jess another good read from you once again.

Ian Crawford said...

5 meter waves...i am in awe...not being a sailor, at what this must feel like!! Cheers from Canada, Happy New Year, stay safe and a big hello to your guardian dolphin if you see him/her cool is that?? Guardian Dolphins in the Storm...sounds like a great name for a rock band!! Onward into 2010 Jessica!!


Anonymous said...

Just to be sure this link hasn't gotten lost in the last blog, I'll post this again. This is footage of an Open 40 down where Jessica is headed. It gives a viseral sense of her reality- sight and sound.

The footage at about minute 3 is worth waiting for.

Best wishes & HNY

Steve in California

Cheryl in San Diego said...

Hi Jessica,
HAPPY NEW YEAR and HAPPY NEW YEAR to your family, team and all of my fellow bloggers
Gosh, I had the same reaction as Ingrid from Sweden regarding the dolphin, goose bumps all over! Fascinating! I guess just another Jessica fan looking out for you.

Your writing is incredible. You have an uncanny knack of putting us all right at the helm with you.

Thank you Jess and may God continue to Bless and shed His grace, peace and love on you.

EJ US Virgin Islands said...

Hi Jesse,

Wishing you a Happy 2010 New Year!

US Virgin Islands

Bob B said...

Happy New Year Jessica. It would be great if nature supplied some fireworks (lightning) off in the distance. I have read accounts of deeds that dolfins have done so I can believe that dolfin was there for you in case you needed her/him.Good wind and seas to you Jessica in this coming new year. Grandpa Bob in Tucson

chris coles-morales said...

Hello there,
Well,it was about time that Phil the dolphin showed up! I asked him to check up on you last week,but I think his gps was off for a couple of days. Sorry bout that,we need to work on his sat link... hehe.
Glad to hear you made it through that bit of stink that I saw on the geostationary site... had my fingers crossed for you along with the toes!!
Wishing you,your team,family,friends and everyone in the blog family... a Happy New Year!! May all your dreams come true... and always follow your heart.
chris in calif

Anonymous said...

Jessica. I think you've done a good job of describing the excitement of riding out a storm. Don't sell yourself short when it comes to descriptive writing.
Bravo girl. Happy sailing through the change of years and soon the change of oceans.
Happy New Year and thanks again for sharing your adventures.
Arnie in Canada:))))

emgb1 said...

Hi Jesse,
What a beautiful post you are giving here to read.
I know what you mean by not being able to find the appropriate words to describe those conditions. I've never been able to find them either. Spectacular indeed, yes.
Moreover, you are beating me easy anyway: 5m on a 10m boat, I'll put my hand to my hat to you. I had gone through 9m myself but the boat I was on was much more than 18m. Still, I found it hard not only to go through that but also to relive it and describe it for years afterwards.
I'm not even mentionning that I'll never be a solo Cape Horner either so, you have my respect and my admiration for that.
And with a dolphin beside you as Neptune's personnal bodyguard. OMG! What a lucky girl you are! Forget the fireworks for now, honestly. Take it all in for yourself. I'd give rather a lot to be able to say that I've lived the same thing, Jesse. You know how to pinch our hearts, you do!

I'll wish all the very best to you and all the people around you for the year to come.
Have you got any project for 2010? For example, what are you doing the first half of the year ? LOL

I'll take the liberty to give you a big hug with these lines.

Stay safe and enjoy

emgb1 from South Wales, UK (GMT+0)

GABRIEL said...

Jessica, I wish you well in 2010 and fulfilled your dreams. The best way to celebrate a new year is on a sailboat in the big ocean! Good winds, (I know the stars in the south are most fascinating fireworks all together:)

Karen said...

Love the dolphin story!

San Francisco, CA, USA

Andy said...

H A P P Y N E W Y E A R!!

Can you posto some pics of the 5m sea?

ciao from Italy,


TheCarterFamily said...

I Believe the Dolphins are smarter than we really know. I'm glad he/she was with you during the big seas. I think they are more connected to humans than we think and I think maybe they can feel our vibrations especially when we are anxious as might have been the case with you and seeing the 5meter waves. Anyway I'm glad they are out there to run with you. Enjoy their spirit. Happy New Year. We saw the fireworks today on the news from Sydney. They were spectacular.

Chimli said...

What a unique and incredible way to begin 2010, surfing down a 5 meter swell in the middle of the biggest ocean on earth with a dolphin as your guardian. Not many can boast of that. CONGRATS and a HAPPY NEW YEAR JESSE.

Pete and Nancy in Keene NH. USA said...


Happy New Year from snowy New Hampshire. You've got the rough seas, but at least you don't have any snow I hope. Great to hear about your Dolphin co-pilot. Dolphions mean good luck.

Take care and be safe. Thousands of us around the world will raise a glass to you at midnight and wish you the best.

Hope you enjoy or have allready enjoyed your New Years feast.

Niels said...

Hi Jessica,
happy new year, and thank you for sharing your exiting life with us all.
You had some strong wind and waves that must have given you useful experience for whatever may come your way.
A dolphin fan of yours, that really was special! Do you think there could be some form of telepatic connection going on?
Stay safe and Keep warm,

Anonymous said...

...hey, jess!!!! HAPPY NEW YEAR!!
♫♪ May ♪♫•*¨*•2010.¸¸♥ ¸¸bring.•*¨*•♫♪you ♪♫•only*¨*•.joy, happiness, gentle winds!!!¸¸♥ SAIL SAFE!!!!!!

- aviv
castro valley, ca, usa

Laura said...

Happy New Year, Jessica. What a spectacular blog today! I check in everyday to read about your amazing journey. Everyone has dreams, but not everyone acts on them. You are, indeed, such an inspiration.

I agree with other posters that the dolphin must be a guardian angel, of sorts....not to mention add another interesting dimension to your fascinating story. Godspeed as you sail down to Cape Horn.

Laura, Newport Beach, California

Ralph said...

Happy New Year from the Johansen family in Newport, Oregon U.S.A.!
The very best to you and your shore crew this coming New year.
Ralph & Becky Johansen

Robert said...

Excellent post Cap,

Very descriptive. I enjoy your writing skills. Dolphins are such amazing mammals and I'm glad for your close encounter. Too bad you didn't get a wink!

Reading Dilip and other circumnavigation happenings or stories, I'm concluding Ella's Pink Lady is well made, as you haven't mentioned any bolts shearing or broken battens. Hope the new year continues for you trouble free and you'll enter Sydney with that beautiful smile on your face.

Happy New Year !!!

Bob from Seattle

kerstin said...


Anonymous said...

Happy New Year ! from St. Clair Michigan, USA. Love the Blog. Stay safe and Happy. Brez

Anonymous said...

Happy New Year ! from St. Clair Michigan, USA. Love the Blog. Stay safe and Happy. Brez

hezakiah299 said...

12-31-09 @ 13:08
Hi Jessica,
What a fantastic post, I'm glad you got some rest first, I'm sure you really needed some. I hope you ate and had some liquids also.
That was great run and it sounds like EPL enjoyed it also. Mr. Parker did a fine job, Kudo's to you Parker. (I hope he doesn’t get a big head). LOL…..
Did you have everything anchored down, I hope the crew held up well, but since you already had them belted in I'm sure they were alright.
As descriptive as your post is, it still requires being there with the wind, the spray and the slamming down of the boat to get the full experience. By no means am I knocking your post, I loved it and it made my imagination work, so I was almost there with you.
Hope you didn't get bruised or hurt while doing your spider dance, but with all your wet weather gear on you should have been somewhat protected. Yes???
The dolphin was amazing, almost like it was reassuring you that everything would be OK. And you stated that it was comforting having him/her there, so he/she accomplished something.
In case you missed it, in one of my posts I mentioned that someone had said that "Jessica" means "God Hears". I don't know if that's from the Bible or what language it's translated from, but I believe it!!!!
Abby’s pretty close to setting sail and she’s going without a dodger. After reading posts from some more experienced sailors, Grant Fjermedal and Steve (Calif) and a few others, I think she’s gonna miss it. I think she’s decided to take the Panama Canal.
Well Jessica, even if/when you run up against rougher weather at least you know that EPL can take it, and yourself as well.
Finally a word of caution, if any of King Neptune’s ladies should offer you a little bit of grog for New Years, you’d be wise to refuse it, I hear they make a mean batch of “Kickapoo joy juice”. LOL…..
Keep up the good work, you are fantastic.
Quick joke:
A man bought his kids some batteries, wrapped them with a note inside saying “Toys not included”. Oh well,……
Looking forward to your next post, and some pics if possible.
Happy New Year to all!!!!!
Loads of love and hugs, your faithful fan and follower.
May God be with you and watch over you and may the angels keep your sails full, and I will keep you in my prayers.
Michael (74) from Kingwood, WV

Peter H said...

Happy New Year, Jesse!
...and all the best for your siling and a safe voyage.
Yes, the dolphin had an eye on you ;-) a
and he/she looked after you and protected you with all his/her senses. If anything would have been dangerous for you, he/she would have interfered somehow. But I guess he/she managed this without you even noticing that he/she did do anything but keeping the winds and waves manouverable for you.
So all the best for you and your team back home!
Peter from Austria

bernie777 said...

Happy New year Jessica you passed your real gale test with flying colours'''i wish you smooth sailing from now on...go Jessica u r a legend////lol Bernie 777

Dave Russell said...

Hey Jess.........Happy New Year 2010.....we do not need photos of those huge seas as your description is enough to get the imagination flowing...
I reckon you will get a CBE in the next New years honours list from the deserve one...

jwb777 said...

Jessica, you are one-of-a-kind!!! I have never had a single doubt about your courage and abilities, natural conditions being the only potential obstacle. Passing unscathed through the 'gale' you have shown us that you are capable in that regard also! And with that mighty sturdy little vessel under you, you are unstoppable!!!

All of us who write, and thousands of others who don't, are all so very proud of you and happy to be a part of your greatly extended 'family'. Seeing you sail safely into Sydney Harbor is your goal and it is ours too! (Remember always --SAFETY FIRST!)

May God bless you richly in 2010!

Hugs and prayers,
Janell, in Oklahoma, USA

Also: Kindest regards and best wishes for the New Year to Jessica's parents, grandparents, & shore team. You all are as awesome in your own ways as 'our' Jessica!

And to ALL of you who make up this big 'family' out there around the globe --Happy Very New Year to you too!

Marie said...

Happy New Year, Jessica! Lots of thoughts and prayers going your way as we begin a new year. Keep safe, happy sailing, and stay clipped! ♥

To Jesse's blog family... Happy New Year to all of you as well!!!

Blessings always,
Marie, WA St. USA

Brad said...

Happy New Year Jessica!

I have been following your progress since day one, and I really enjoying reading your blog. I'm looking forward to riding along in 2010!

Anonymous said...

Happy New Year Jessica, and safe sailing. You are an inspiration to the youth.

- Doug

Anonymous said...

Happy New Year Jessie ... hope 2010 keeps those dolphins coming ...

Best wishes

Jeff ...
New York, USA

Jan said...

happy new year jesse,another amazing blog,a bit too scary.

all the best to your shore crew. cheers from canterbury nz.

Anonymous said...

Wishing you a happy, healthy, prosperous and spiritually fulfilling 2010 :)
In the company of a dolphin, Jessica... you are truly blessed!

We didn't celebrate, but nature put on a spectacular show, after a stinking hot day suddenly the sky got dark, the wind changed, coming from the south thank heavens, and the most almighty thunderstorm developed. The thunder and lightning was incredible and it was like Nature had decided to put on her own show, no need to spend $ millions on pyrotechnics.
This was accompanied by a wonderful downpour, replenishing the earth, spirit and filling the water tanks again.
Thanks for sharing your journey, I am with you ever day
Tia (Moonambel)

Anonymous said...

Happy New years!
Any new year's resolutions?
Sounds lovely surfing the waves! Lots of Dolphins out here, always so nice to see them!

Tim B. Sf, CA, USA

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