Right now the British Ocean Rowing Team are slap bang in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean about a thousand miles from any land save the ocean floor two miles below. Although the Pacific is a far bigger Ocean to cross than the Atlantic that ocean has many islands dotted throughout and the team are currently further from land than anywhere else on the planet.
To put that into perspective they are about as far away from getting to a hospital as an astronaut in a space station. They have now been in a rowing boat out of sight of land for eighteen days and will have become acclimatised to the strange world around them.
Physically, there is little to focus the mind on outside the boat; during the day there may be clouds in the sky and waves on the water and the occasional glimpse of wild life but that is about it. The rowing boat has become the team’s little world. Things that may seem uninteresting and mundane to us like a chocolate treat or a chat on the satellite phone become highlights of the day for them.
At night the world outside the boat changes dramatically; away from air and light pollution the sky at night explodes into a million stars twinkling with such clarity that you feel like you could almost touch them. The little world of a rowing boat expands to the size of the Universe.
The messages from the team often centre around this environment that they are living in; the wild life, the sea, the weather. It may seem a strange place to be for you and me but remember two thirds of the earth is Ocean, uninhabited by humans.
Most of you reading this will be in a town or a city, it is we that are in the unusual environment created by mankind, not the British Ocean Racing Team.