While you were away…..

Isabel Burnham By

I thought I’d use my blog this week to explain what it was like to see the rest of the team again after so long.

I last saw Laura, Nats, Ems and Lizanne in Hawaii at the end of July and Meg before she headed off to Samoa in November. Although I have spoken to them all during that time, actually seeing Laura, Nats, Ems and Meg walk through arrivals at Heathrow on Tuesday was a wonderful moment, although rather surreal. The rest of our week was extremely busy with media and team commitments. It was great to be together again, although Lizanne’s presence was very much missed. One of the highlights was being able to catch up with her briefly on Skype (we took a mini tour of her flat in South Africa and met her housemates, all while we were sitting at a computer in the canteen of the offices of The Times!).

In the midst of the media frenzy, it was difficult to relax and catch up properly with the girls. It felt rather like a return to the time before we set off from San Francisco when we were running around trying to get the project to the start line. This, combined with the fact that we are such good friends that it immediately felt like they had never been away, had the bizarre effect at times of making it feel like the row never happened at all! But then at other times, I would say something and be faced with a row of blank faces looking back at me and it would really bring home to me just how long Laura, Nat and Ems in particular have been away from the ‘real world’ for.  Although we were really grateful for the messages we received on the boat with updates on world news, it is difficult to keep a track of everything when you’re out on the ocean.  So, over the last few days, I have (rather poorly) provided potted summaries of some of the world news from the last 10 months: the refugee crisis, Bolt v Gatlin, the junior doctor strikes, the Paris attacks, the Rugby World Cup, the new Bond film, even Justin Beiber’s comeback and “who is Jeremy Corbyn?“.



  1. billy says:

    welcome back very special lady’s your so brave can you tell me what has happened to Doris will she go on show take care enjoy your break

  2. Jim Andrews says:

    So much happened in 2015, even trying to recall it all now, is difficult. Sadly, the overriding memory is Paris. Even though the Crew, received snippets of news, to not get the full horror of that event and other atrocities in the Middle East, was maybe a blessing? One of the big positive stories for 2015 was 6 ladies rowing the Pacific ina 29 ft pink rowing boat, providing a group of fans worldwide with an intriguing insight to life onboard and in the vastness of the Pacific. Thank you. XX

  3. Barney says:

    Thanks for mentioning Lizanne, Issy. I have just read the comments to the Times 2 article and one comment is that there is no mention of the 6th member of the Coxless Crew. Whirlwind experiences will usually disrupt best laid plans but when you 5 are all together, please ensure that 6 girls get recognition. Maybe a cardboard cutout is required, or carry a fishing rod in her place! When asked why you have a fishing rod, you will have your prompt to mention her name.

  4. Laura Laura says:

    Hi barney,
    You are so very right about the lack of Lizanne’s inclusion. We have been making sure she has been talked about in every interview we have done and yet for The Times it was cut out/ not included which was a big disappointment. Lizanne is a valued member of the team as all the girls are and we always knew it was going to be hard with her not around. One thing for sure, is that it will make our first time all together in April/May, so very very special! X

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