This is the post I've been dreaming of writing since the day this project became a reality, when I signed the paperwork for Constellation in August, 2006. I literally cannot believe I'm here, sitting on an island off of Africa, departing for the Caribbean, tomorrow. I'm speechless, which is why I'm writing.
I won't be speechless forever though, because while I sail across the Atlantic, I'll be dropping updates back to the site as an audio podcast. Which means, you'll be able to hear my silly voice telling you all about my adventures via satellite phone, from the middle of nowhere! The podcast will be available to play within each post update over the following month, or you can subscribe via iTunes. Read more about it all on the new Podcast page. Remember, while I'm out there sailing, it's possible I will be closer to orbiting satellites than I will be to land! Chew on that for awhile...
While you're chewing, I'll explain what's happening, where I'm going, and what I'm doing it all for.
Each voice podcast will be an un-rehearsed update on my trip, including our current position. I expect it will be quite different from my posts up until now, as I will have limited airtime, and speaking is quite different from writing! Very special thanks to Marty at Autosystems for assisting with my satellite communications costs, and also for agreeing to coordinate and manage the technical aspects of website while I'm at sea. If you're enjoying the podcast, leave a thank you comment for Marty, I know he'd appreciate it! I will leave an update roughly every 4 to 5 days, so if you do leave any comments on the posts, maybe he can even read a few out to me, to keep me going! If you're feeling really keen and have the time, it would be great if someone felt like transcribing each podcast as a blog comment. This will allow people who can't listen to the update still keep know what's going on. Also, if updates suddenly stop, keep in mind there is a far greater chance of technical problems than anything more serious (ie. phone failure, electrical system meltdown, aliens attacking satellites etc).
Within each post, a player will show up which looks like this:
Subscribe to the podcast here (cut and paste the url into the podcast subscribe box of the latest version of iTunes)
Or get notified of new updates via email here.
The most important thing of all though, is what I'm hoping to support via my crossing. For a long time now, I've wanted to try and do something good with my trip. So, it is here that I will announce my attempt to raise money to help Oxfam Australia build bridges in Cambodia. I will call this project 'Bridge over the Atlantic', and you can read exactly what I'm talking about, how to help, and more on my new Fundraising page. I will not double-post everything here, so I urge you to read the full details of my fundraising campaign via the new dedicated area, if only because I think you'll quite like the idea! With each significant ocean passage over 1000nm, I will attempt to raise funds for a unique and interesting cause, each one being different and taking part in another area of the globe. You all know I rarely have a dime to my name, but, for this crossing, I would like to forget about my own problems, and use my crossing to generate goodwill for others. If you run a website, consider linking to my new fundraising page, or alternatively, if you have a printer and a large workplace, think about printing off one of these flyers to rally support!
Unless there is an unscheduled stop in Cape Verde, I'll be back to my normal post routine in some 30 days, live from Barbados - For now, each post will simply be titled 'Bridge over the Atlantic, Day X'.
Thank you so much to everyone who takes the time to read this site, to all the wonderful people I've met in the Canaries, and to the sponsors who continually get me out of a jam! Thank you to Martin & Loopy in Barbados for the local pilotage info, Fudgie for everything, and Rich for the weather routing assistance. And last but not least, a big HELLO to all the 3rd graders at Rippowam Cisqua in New York!
Till the Caribbean, moby nick.