January 23, 2018:
Final week!! I can't believe Antigua is almost within sight. Despite being so close everything has just gotten harder. My body is really feeling it now. Any movement I make on the boat is accompanied by a chorus of groans. There are so many different places that hurt it would be pointless listing them all. I'm most worried about my weak knee (the one I footsteer with) which is finally starting to go. I do have to give a shoutout to Nick and everyone at Activcore as well as Nick Klevans for all the work they did on it, its amazing that it has lasted this long under such strenous conditions. I try to remember though its all about my mindset and how I handle the pain (despite all my complaining). Every rowing shift is a mental battle, sometimes I win sometimes I lose. The other day I stopped rowing to look at my watch and see if my shift was over 5 times in the span of a single minute. I had to laugh at myself for being so pathetic. While other times I can go an entire shift without checking the time. Shifts like that leave me feeling better mentally and physically even if I take fewer breaks.
Now that I'm done listing all my grievances, I can focus on the positives. I saw whales the other day! I heard a massive spout of air and turned behind me in time to see the tail of a whale less than 3 feet in front on my boat. A few more swam by over the course of the next few minutes which was awesome. I'm also seeing more and more different kinds of birds which is cool. And of course the stars continue to be amazing. I put on my foul weather gear and lay out on deck last night for a while soaking in the view. This might not seem like a highlight to many people but I saw an airplane for the first time since I left Canary Islands a few days ago. Because it was so far away it was just a blinking dot moving across the sky but it still felt so strange seeing it. I wonder how many times I've been flying somewhere and someone else has been standing alone in the middle of the Atlantic looking up at me.