we got back and had lunch, I only got 15 minutes of sleep before I had to get
ready for a work function for my wife. Sorry for no post until now. By the time
we returned to the room around 1030, I couldn’t keep my eyes
First, I must say the Captain did a great job. He knew having special “expertise” was important for an official Observer. So, he arranged to have two other captains on the boat. One as the Observer, who did not assist the swim in any way. One who functioned as my immediate support – did the feeds, etc.
According to everyone I have spoken with, including these
three captains, no one has ever swam even a one-way between these islands. Much
less a Triple. So, there was a lot of learning going on. But the captain, did
his job: Got me to shore alive.
I got fooled in the first leg – St John to St Thomas. Smoked out the lap in 1 hour and 10 minutes. It was a great
feeling seeing the bottom come up to me at shore. It felt good and I thought to
myself that the swim was going to be easier than I thought. Then Mother Nature
called me a smart-ass and smacked my ass. I knew the wind was blowing toward St
Thomas, so expected the second leg to be harder – but we all expected the third
leg to be easy again. Instead the legs went from easy, to hard, to really,
really hard. The second lap took about double the time. The winds were bad and
the current was working against us. For a long time, I was stuck 1,000 meters
from shore. A little tired, but thinking the worse was behind me, I started the
third leg with a relaxed optimism. About 500 meters off shore, the currents
shifted against us. And it was all uphill from there. Swells picked up. Boat
traffic picked up. Wind picked up. And the currents got stronger. I was only
about 15 meters from the boat, but there were many times that the swells were
so big that I completely lost sight of even the antenna of the 35 foot escort
boat. I will admit that the third leg pushed me very close to my limits. Took
all I had to carry on.
We couldn’t get to the rock beach we used on the
first leg, so I had to scramble over sharp(ish), urchin covered boulders to
finish... and instead of a pebble as a trophy, I have an urchin spine in one of
If you read this far, thanks for your interest.
I will get my paperwork turned into the Federation late this week.