With only eight days to go it may seem strange that I am in England, having just left France this morning on the super-fast Eurostar train. Well it's October 30th and my wife Catherine and I are celebrating our thirtieth wedding anniversary. You could conclude that I am not paying attention to the solo circumnavigation ahead and that I should be at the boat in St. Augustine. To the contrary, I need to be with Catherine for a few days, visiting some favorite places and some old friends, to strengthen memories and bonds from which I derive great pleasure and will seek to enjoy again thus serve to strengthen my resolve to sail fast and safe to return again.
As I write we are nearing Dartmouth in south west England to visit a colleague Iain McCall, a radiologist of renown who taught for the university for many years at our annual Vail Seminar Weeks. I asked him by phone if I would recognize him and we agreed he should come to the train station waving an old X-Ray - preferably of his lumbar spine.
I will be home in two days after the annual Channel Swimming Association banquet in Dover. My son Alan, (a solo circumnavigator) has flown up from his home in New Zealand to assist my project manager, Steve Pettengill to have all systems ready. Most of the food is already on board. Just last minute fresh fruits and vegetables need to be added. The wine cellar is stocked! I will be ready and determined.