Day 9 at sea

Emma Mitchell By

Day 9 at Sea

Imagine if you will being on a roller coaster. Now imagine being on the roller coaster without being strapped in. This is what being aboard Doris is like at the moment. On the deck the roller coaster is cold and windswept, the track being waves the size of large houses which can come from any direction. Add to this a thorough dousing with freezing cold sea water every couple of minutes and being thrown off your seat by the odd errant wave. Losing your stomach falling off the top of a wave is happening rather a lot today. The outside roller coaster also comes with thousands of jellyfish which the sea around us is full of. The unlucky ones of these get washed up on to Doris and our deck permanently houses at least 3 or 4 blue blobs.

In the cabin the roller coaster is even less comfortable. Inside you can’t see the waves coming and so unexpected lurching and swooping movements slam you into the sides causing bumps and bruises. Doing even the simplest of tasks takes so long and is an absolute mission. To make a cup of tea in the morning you first have to stick your head out of the cabin and lean perilously out to the outside hatch to retrieve the jet boil and mugs hoping the waves don’t get you while your head is exposed. Then the jet boil needs fixing and lighting outside – not so easy in strong winds. Pouring the boiling water into a thermos flask and then into mugs whilst trying to stay upright in the cabin and then the biggest challenge – getting the dried milk into the mug without spilling it (my tremor already makes this difficult and I’ve already had to clean up spilt milk more than once). Fortunately we’re British so will go through all this uncomplaining for our morning cuppa.

The wind is still strong and cold and we are still struggling to make progress west but we aren’t letting it get us down. Singing the sound of music soundtrack at full volume gets us through a shift on the oars and earlier we saw a dolphin.  I still have faith that some time soon I may regain the feeling in my feet (although I suspect that today is not that day).



  1. Karl says:

    Sounds horrendous for now. The hills are alive and moving it would seem.

    Hoping that the calm comes soon and that you can weather the storm till then.

    Amazing that that you can make progress in that slop at all.

    Keep it up!,

  2. Antonia says:

    You poor things. I’m sitting at a nice unmoving desk- but I did just get caught in a freezing cold hail storm (in Surrey!) as we’re still bearing the brunt of some North Pole weather- or so the TV would have us believe. Chins up ladies- have a great time on the ride of your life!

  3. pat says:

    I am so sorry you all.are.having a rough time. I am warm on land in virginia.usa. and having a i.will say a prayer for all of. you can do This. You are strong and determined.yes you are tough and strong. Jellyfish.

  4. Ladies, your courage and tenacity is nearly incomprehensible to those of us as home, surrounded by comforts we take for granted. Yet, in an odd twist, I will admit there are moments I envy where you are and what you are doing. That said, Karla and I are living vicariously through you and look for your communiques each day with keen interest.

  5. pat mitchell says:

    Oh by the way Emma I am a Mitchell as well.

  6. Solene says:

    I’m loving reading all your updates, I look forward to it everyday 🙂 Sorry to hear that you that you’ve hit a bit of a rough time! At least you don’t have to go through this without a nice cuppa 🙂 Hope the days get a bit easier and the weather starts behaving for you all. Your courage and determination is inspiring. Miss you lil’ Emma! xx

  7. Liz Rae says:

    good morning brave girlies – thank you so much for sharing your adventures with us landlubbers – it must be so hard to write a blog when Doris is riding up and down those huge waves. keep singing !

  8. Kerry Kitto says:

    full of admiration for you all, keep smiling and know that we are all following you willing you on xx

  9. Lauren Young says:

    Oh my, I can’t even imagine, and your desciption is pretty vivid Emma! I’ve been on a rollercoaster once (and Id sworn before that day I never would) and now I know I will never again so I admire you ladies 1 billion percent and send you warmth, hugs and sea calming vibes, with much love, Lolls xxx ps I LOVE reading your blog it’s beyond inspirational and my mom reads it too, she’s hooked, she calls it the Doris blog lol

  10. Suzanne says:

    These will be the days you will remember and feel so special that you experienced it(even though it hasn’t been easy) and when the calm days come you will appreciate those even more so!

  11. danny says:

    Hold tight, stay safe, ride the waves…praying for your safety xxxx

  12. Mike S says:

    You’re having a tough time at the moment girls but the upturn is you are inspiring all of us with you’re grit & spirit, love reading your blogs, Keep strong.

  13. Ruth N says:

    Let’s hope Day 10 is a bit less of an Alton Towers and a bit more of a Pleasure Beach. x

  14. Simon TY says:

    Jellyfish: so at least you have fresh protein. I am sure there must be a use for them ? Bait to catch a vast tuna so sushi all round ? In fact, hook a ginat tuna that is heading for Hawaii and get a tow. Any Americans reading the blog will wonder why a cuppa is so important. They just would not understand. The map is looking very impressive, you are a long way south but far far beyond the continental shelf. xxx

  15. Jim Andrews says:

    Thank you for the excellent daily updates, I look forward to reading the progress reports. Your sense of humour coupled with your bravery and resolve are amazing. The cup of tea, essential British loved beverage, how could you get through a day without your cuppa to start you off. Well done so far Ladies, our thoughts and best wishes are with you. XX

  16. Mum and dad says:

    We are so proud of you girls, your grit and determination is inspiring a lot of people here in Cornwall. Remember it is these challenging times that makes you stronger. Hopefully calmer waters very soon, enjoy the ride! Xx

  17. sarah Lee says:

    MM, sounds a bit crap,, but you know what, if U have ridden the storm then things can only get better ,,and they will, xx

  18. Pimo says:

    I remember an aunty of mine had prepared jellyfish with vinegar awhile back, it was quite good. If you’ve eaten raw fish, mussels, oysters, etc then you’d like it too. The texture is similar to oysters but chewy. I don’t recall if aunty put any chili in her concoction but it had a kick to it. 🙂

    My thoughts and prayers with you all.

  19. Esther B says:

    You can do it girls!! We are all behind you 100% and just know that you will get there even if, by the sounds of it, you are battling mother nature at the moment. You wouldn’t want it to be too easy now would you……

    Stay strong and safe. Look forward to hearing the latest news from you. Hope you are all feeling well and not too sea sick.

    Special hello and hugs to Laura xxx

  20. Hi Girls
    We think you are truly inspirational and are with you ( in spirit) 100%. We have only ever met Laura and have known her family for a long time. She spoke so highly of you all at the Penventon and with reading your blogs it’s amazing how you start to feel that you are getting to know you all as well. We will continue to follow you closely ( if it makes you feel a little better, it’s raining here today) & wish you a very safe journey with improving conditions!

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