Saturday, January 16, 2010

Highlights From An Incredible Few Days!

I'm going to apologize in advance for the over-use of exclamation marks (!), but it's certainly been an amazing few days! Sorry not to have updated you all earlier on my side of events, but after running on not much more than adrenalin for a good 4 days, I've only had one thing on my mind - sleep!

So much has happened lately. So many highs. But I'm going to start at the beginning with Tuesday and 60nm between us and the Cape. Passing squalls, the waves standing up a little as we passed in to shallower water, the wind settling into a consistent 40knots by nightfall, all made life pretty interesting.

But the fast disappearing miles till the Cape and sighting land (Diego Ramirez Island) on that afternoon had me completely pumped up and totally bouncing with excitement! Seeing land after so long was incredible. I can hardly remember feeling so thrilled, which when I think about it, seems like a bit of an overreaction considering I couldn't actually see anything more
than the outline of a grey bit of rock disappearing frequently, as we dropped into the troughs between waves. Through my eyes at the time, that distant bit of rock was the most beautiful and incredible thing I'd seen. It's amazing how deprivation can make something look a million times more special! I imagine that my first long hot shower when I get back home will be much the same!

That night was a busy and sleepless one as we approached the Cape. To ensure that we didn't just go surfing by in the dark, I put a bit of effort into slowing us down and just as it was getting light, there it was - the distinctive outline of Cape Horn!

Against the grey sky and with albatrosses flying in the foreground, it was just as I'd imagined for so long. Mythical and striking pretty much sums it up! The poor visibility didn't exactly make it the best sightseeing weather, but if we'd drifted comfortably by on a nice sunny day, it wouldn't have been half as special! In between taking pictures and phone calls, it was an extremely proud moment!

Then the flyover with Mum and Dad sure turned out to be quite an adventure in itself. With pretty poor weather conditions it was only on the third attempt that the plane managed to find Ella's Pink Lady. I'm sure you can imagine what an emotional roller-coaster it was for me, not to mention Mum and Dad. First I'd hear that they'd just taken off and would be overhead within a few hours. Then would come the bad news that they had to turn back! When the plane finally did find us, the 45 minutes that they spent overhead, passed in an extremely fast blur. I got myself very dizzy and totally tangled up in my tethers watching then fly around in circles! In the end I think it was a good thing that I couldn't really make out Mum and Dad through the windows, because if I had been able to I don't think that I would have managed to keep my composure. I owe a really big thanks to everyone who made the flyover happen.

Mostly the wind has been nice to us over the last two days and we're already very close to the Falklands. But with quite a bit of shipping around and with the side effects of all that adrenalin, I hardly managed any sleep at all till yesterday. Today I was treated to full clear skies and tonight I've got stars like I haven't had in a very long time!

But I haven't been the only one not getting a lot of sleep lately. Mum, Dad, Bruce and Andrew have all been keeping very strange hours and they're only a few of a very long list of people that played a huge part in seeing Ella's Pink Lady and I safely around the Cape. Thanks a million!!

Love Jesse


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Lucas Goicoechea said...

you are a wonderfull woman, Cape Horn is a very very dangerous zone, many botes and big scale missing, Argentina continental is nice, Welcome you know. Good luck and good travel.

La Plata - Buenos Aires - Argentina

Swati said...

You are an amzing woman. I admire your guts and determinaton , maturity and composure...


There are no words to express ho w i feel right now about you and ELP....

Swati (India)

Transplanted ''Aussie'' said...

My last post for awhile,but I wanted to get your recent update before I head to ''Haiti'' in the next day or so.Our teams over their have had success both at the Hotel Montana'' and at other locations,so I hope my ''skills'' will be put to fruitful use once I get their.I THANK YOU for taking a moment and sharing your thoughts of this unfolding tragedy,I hope the ''world family'' will take time from their busy lives and make a contribution,it is a dire situation they are in,GOD WILLING the help has made it in time for the majority.
Great get your update and you have broken free from the shipping lanes,I can remember the day's sailing in Sydney harbor with my Dad and dodging the ferries and whatever came at us.
Jessica,you get ''trucking''[ yanky slang] on your adventure,you will be in my thoughts as I put my 'skills'' into practice in the next weeks.I AM SO SO PROUD TO BE PART OF THIS JOURNEY,unfortunately I must go where the ''need'' is.
You stay safe,warm,hooked on and be positive in your daily routines,your strengths come from within.
In closing,THANK YOU to all the kind words from my fellow blogger family,it means allot that people who I haven't meant in person,but though I feel apart of them through your journey you are on.
I hope,god willing to keep up on the website while away,but please know you all are in my thoughts and especially you young lady,I AM SO PROUD OF YOU,THE ACCOMPLISHMENTS YOU HAVE ACHIEVED SO FAR.
God speed,may the winds keep you true,hugs to you and crew,Mum and Dad.
Much love and continued support.
Stephen M.,
Transplanted ''Aussie'',
Maryland,USA,[soon in Haiti]

Anonymous said...

Hi Jesse,
I'm sending you this note from Sherborn, Massachusetts, USA. You are incredible! I have followed your journey and sent your site to our family and friends. Never ever ever give up! Our best wishes for a safe and fabulous journey!

Anonymous said...

Just caught up on your last big achievement -the rounding of Cape Horn - which has gone so smoothly.
I was in a boat off the coast at Margaret River WA when you were rounding Cape Horn. I felt a bit queasy in the swell but realise it is incomparable to the seas and swell you see.
All the best for the rest of the sail!
in Perth

Unknown said...

Incredible and gallant attempt for someone so young to tackle such an adventurous journey.
We wish all the Luck you need to complete the mission.

Walter Biggin
B.C. Canada

Anonymous said...

Jessica - we are following your adventure and want you to know how much we care about you. You are a wonderful young woman. I am not sure I could let my own child do this but you are certainly quite capable.
Deb - Florida

Unknown said...

Its elementary my dear Watson! You ARE an inspiration to all of us beached whales! Good on ya mate, and may the winds always be at your back, Todd

Robert @ Murwillumbah NSW said... you have to word your blogs or when you write a report on your website with word "we" - you are alone and nobody else on board with you! But Australia is behind you!!!!!!

Doing a top job tough cookie and keep it going and stay focussed every second!

What I'm Thinkin' said...

I am glad you finally have a smooth sail. I laughed when you said you can set your coffee down and not worry about it crashing about in the cabin. Cheers!

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