Monday, August 3, 2009

August 2, 2009, The Swim

Good morning world!

What a great day we had out on the channel yesterday, and I am serious. I have never enjoyed any of my previous 9 so much, and that includes the doubles.

Not to be philosophical or anything, but who ever swam and crewed, whether making the journey to France, LIVED yesterday.Not in a danger sense but in a it's "great to be alive" aspect.
The morning started of easy enough, if wind conditions hadn't change, we probably would still be out there finishing the original plan.

When Freda Streeter calls the boat and asks Mike Oram how it is and he replies, "a bit lumpy", she's knows that we're not talking a ripple in the water.Usually I get very frustrated when encountered F3-4 winds, just because I was always thinking about the 'big' goal, but yesterday was different, as the conditions worsened, I started enjoying my swim more: time, doubles and triples blew away, and I was enjoying the present moment. I was probably the least 'affected' by the giant swells and crashing waves, and I'm glad I made a goggle change so I watch everyone roll back & forth on the Gallivant, very entertaining.

I think at my 10 hour feed, I had a conference with Mike and Janet, telling them I would be very content with a solo. Mike quickly responded, "we'll have none of that talk, be on your way". At first I was pissed, not speaking at the next feed but gradually my mind calmed and a turn around went back into place, but I really didn't know how I would manage on the way back, but time will tell. I started smiling and having fun again.

Mike landed me on a beautiful white sandy beach, I think he mentioned 'Petit Blanche Nez'. It was so sandy, I had quite a time searching for a pebble to bring back for collection. Oh yea, time, 11 hours, 31 minutes but that is insignificant, #10 in the books.

The surf was tough to get through and as I managed, I kept thinking, 'how are we going to back', 'you have got to be kidding'.

When I reached the boat, I spoke to Mike on the port side, something had changed in him. It probably was there the whole time but he wasn't going to let on. "Keep swimming for an hour or so, you can't be 1st to come out", at least I think I heard those words. I could do that, I wasn't cold, I wasn't injured, I actually felt quite good.

At the 1st feed, Derek handed me the warm Maxim and Honey, I was lightly hinting "any time you want to put the ladder down, I'm ready", Not yet. OK, swim some more. I was being shielded as much as possible by the boat, I had moved to swim on the starboard side after my talk with Mike upon return from the beach.

The waves and swells on the port side were grand I am told, I figured so, by the roll and waves that were squashed by the boat, were rolling me over onto my back. I have to admit at this time I was not swimming hard, I was playing, joking with Hal and Chris, as they climbed up to the upper deck, "you guys are mean" and "anytime now".AT the last feed, the ladder came down, but not before Mike knew I was content with the decision, and I was.

I had a BLAST. My only regret was that painful (intestinal) ride home to Dover Harbor.

Thank you everyone for yesterday, I will cherish the memories.


A 2nd blog will follow with pictures but at the time I must nap.

Cast:
Janet Galya: crew chief and partner, thank you for standing by me (I understand why you may go into retirement)
Mike Oram: pilot and friendly mentor, I've never seen you at the helm for such a long time, T.Y.
Derek Carter: Boat crew and friend, Thanks for the feeds.
James: Boat crew and new friend, Thanks for the help
Hal & Chris: observers with great smiles
James Gardner: newbie who took the challenge to help Janet, unfortunately he went on a 8 hour roller coaster, you did fine James, thank you.

Dream, Prepare, Succeed
Help those with cancer: www.swimacrossthesound.org

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Here we go again

Woke up at 3:20, made the coffee, called Mom for a good bye & I love you.

Last emails and FBing.

Woke up the Mexicans and now we're heading downstairs for a 2nd cab ride.

Talk to you later.

Dream, Prepare, Succeed.
Help tohose with Cancer; www.swimacrossthesound.org

We'll give it another try tomorrow & Happy Birthday Patrick

Hopefully, the weather front that stuck over Dover today, will be far, far away tomorrow morning.


Sunday August 2nd is the lowest of this Neap tide cycle, that is very good news. I have chosen after deliberating with my pilot, Mike Oram, that tomorrow may be good to try. He has searched all the weather sites, shore broadcasts, more hours than I can imagine, trying to find the best time to put me in the water.

I want to swim. I trust in my pilot and crew. I have prepared to my best ability and I hope we have a fun, and interesting swim. I need a good workout.


This afternoon, Janet & I watched one of newest and youngest members of the English Channel Family sign the wall at the White Horse. Nicholas Caine, 16, from San Francisco, CA, completed his swim on a very tough July 29th, 13hour, 11 minutes. CONGRATULATIONS Nick and I'm sure we have not seen the last of this kid in the Open Water, He has a great attitude and family fan club.
Now I am off the rest for a few hours.
Dream, Prepare, Succeed.
Help those with Cancer: http://www.swimacrossthesound.org/
Sorry I missed your 20th Birthday Patrick, wishing you a wonderful year.

False Alarm: 8am


Gallivant was loaded and ready, but the weather front came in earlier than expected.


Not a nice place to exercise.


Breakfast at Victoria Guest House and a nap now, maybe a 8pm start tonight.

video

Swimming for Homes for the Brave

After spending the past 20 years paddling from Dover to France, it is time to venture into new waters, while helping some special people.
Soon, I will be traveling with my A-team to Scotland to swim the length of the famous Loch Ness.
As always, I try to help a Foundation raise funds and awareness and I thank you for interest and support.
I am deeply troubled with the thought of homeless individuals, especially in our US Veteran population.

That is why I am teaming up with our Connecticut-based “Homes for the Brave”. Can you imagine not having a place to call home?

Here is more information about Homes for the Brave! -Facebook pages – https://www.facebook.com/pages/ABRIHomes-for-the-Brave/199613606735630?ref=hl

- Annual Appeal with more information about our financials and programs- http://www.homesforthebrave.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/10/HFTB-2014-Annual-Report-FINAL.pdf

-Check donations can be mailed to the following address:
Homes for the Brave
655 Park Avenue
Bridgeport, CT 06604

- Donations can be made online as well: https://homesforthebrave.isecuresites.com/products/index.php?type=1110

Please write “Loch Ness Swim/Marcy” to track your donation.


I will always be dedicating my swimming to all those battling cancer and in the memory of 4 special people in my life. Cancer first hit my family when I was young. My grand-aunt Eleanor Kersavage, passed away with uterine cancer and my Auntie Bea Halchak battled with brain cancer.

On January 1, 2002, our LEHY family lost Nikki Giampolo to bone cancer, just turning 16 years old. Her spirit still lives on in our East Hartford swim team.

In July of 2009, my brother-in-law, Gregory Allen Urban, who passed away, after a valient battle with lung cancer. I can see him now, talking about cars and projects around the house, music and his family.

I know Aunties, Eleanor and Bea, Nikki, Greg and all the angels will help me CUT through all this water this summer.

The St. Vincent's Medical Center Foundation, based in Bridgeport, CT provides financial support for the needs that Health insurance companies don't cover, in addition to providing affordable cancer screening, wigs, medication and other things to make life easier for those suffering with cancer and their families.

Please make a donation, and thank you.

Online donations can be made at: http://give.stvincents.org

or you can send a check through the post to:

Swim Across the Sound
St. Vincent's Medical Center Foundation
2800 Main Street
Bridgeport, CT 06606
(203)576-5451

Thank you so very much, peace and good health to all.