Monday, March 17, 2008

Review: Sally's Odd at Sea

I've recently finished reading Sally Kettle's "Sally's Odd as Sea", which I very much enjoyed.

In it Sally explains how it was she ended up rowing across the Atlantic not once but twice, having had no real experience of rowing or crossing an ocean. The first time her partner had to pull out after a few days for medical reasons so she had to complete the crossing with her mum!

What I especially liked was Sally's frank and amusing style, telling a tale of the lows of blisters and sore bums combined with her obvious sense of fun and enjoyment of the good things of life, including paradoxically fine food and comfy beds. Knickers, pink and Bridget Jones style, also play a leading role.

The biggest question I had at the start and to a degree also at the end is "Why?" Seriously, given you can sail across, why on earth row? The wonderful thing about sailing is how the wind keeps you going day after day and it does the hard work.

But I guess there are those that say why sail when you can fly? And I certainly wouldn't exchange my crossing for any airline ticket. There is the feeling of experiencing the ocean and sense of achievement on reaching the other side that you can't experience any other way.

Maybe a clue can come from the Ocean Rowing Society's motto which is "Know thy self", for there few hiding places in a tiny rowing boat with a thousand miles water to row in any direction to get to land.

Sally also raised about £300,000 for charity - an amazing achievement in its own right.

If you're interested in rowing an ocean and want to know what it would be like or to hear the story of three and a half girls in a boat then pick it up and start reading for Sally's a good companion all the way across.

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