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Thank you for visiting my blog, I really appreciate your ongoing interest and support.

- For regular updates related to my travels, guiding work, film and book events or you are simply wondering where the heck I am at the moment, please visit: Travel/Guiding/Adventure blog.


-For South Georgia Expedition and Albatross updates as well as environmental articles of interest, please check out: Oceanmaid Ventures blog site )the site that you are currently on.

Cheers and thanks for your interest. Hayley

Thursday, March 18, 2010

March 17th - Grytviken

It was a drizzly morning as I lay bundled up in my sleeping bag, hearing the gentle misty rain tapping on my tent. There was no urgency to pack and move quickly and so I listened to the sounds of South Georgia around me. There was a scuffle going on near by involving two teenage Fur Seals and from the feelings of thud thud thud on the ground beneath me, a rather large Elephant Seal must have landed from being out at sea.

Once I was up, having now a well established packing system, all gear was soon stowed and I was ready to don my drysuit and launch into the small breaking surf for the final time.

The calmness of this morning was a perfect addition to my mellow mood and once on the water, every stroke I focused on as it propelled me towards the completion of this journey. I tormented myself with the imaginings of rounding the point, just having successfully completed the entire circumnavigation. Disappointment flooded back like water released from a broken dam and it was then in attempt to pull myself together I went through all that I have observed and experienced on my kayak trek along this eastern coast of South Georgia. I reminded myself that despite these circumstances, the only difference really in having not been able to complete this expedition as I wanted, is purely my attitude towards it. And with that thought I directed my morning thoughts and focus towards feeling positive in all that has been accomplished.

My visit with Shackleton was key to the morning of 'moving forward'. I sat beside his Granite grave and said out-loud “Well mate, it wasn't quite what we expected eh?” “I reckon, the best thing about all this is that we are here and isn't it so bloody beautiful?” A few more words I shared with my silent listener then re-launched and made my way towards Northanger. I was relieved to have no fuss made on this arrival as I was deliberately left to arrive anonymously.

I joined the crew for freshly made bannock and a cup of steaming tea, then soon went about the morning rinsing and drying gear. I was grateful for the offer of a shower which, after a month you can only imagine how divine that felt. That evening we were kindly invited for a meal at the base. Friendly and familiar faces was a welcome aswell as the bottle of bubbly we drank in celebration of what was accomplished and what is still left to come from the post expedition plans and projects. It was Saint Patrick's day therefore it was encouraged that we joined the rest of the base staff for after dinner celebrations. I was happy to be completely immersed in the social simplicity of learning an Irish dance, and that we did until late in the evening.

Today – March 18th is a day for final packing, a day of farewells and bon-voyages, a day to begin yet another leg in this incredible journey. I do feel ready for home. I have been away for nearly 2 months and by the time I set foot on my home turf it will be over 9 weeks. I have a presentation to prepare for the Prince Albert II as we sail to the Falklands, so already I will have the opportunity to begin piecing together my story.

I am not sure of the ships schedule, we may be fortunate to have a full day in South Georgia before departing for the Falklands. I am assuming Beth-Anne and I will be able to take part in the landings planned and make the most of more filming opportunities. Ahh how weird and wonderful it will be to be on a ship without having any responsibility.

I will keep the tracker on so please feel free to follow our progress and I will continue with the blog updates (thanks to Dean back home). Hopefully we will be able to post a few photos as well, to keep things lively and interesting. Dean has been able to send a few comments people have posted on my blog. I really look forward to finally getting on the internet and be able to read them all. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and comments. I will treasure and I appreciate every word.

Cheers and thanks to you all



Shearwater said...

Well done Hayley. Nicely done. What you've done is amazing. I can't wait to come to a presentation. Hopefully you'll come to Vancouver! I shall be up in Haida Gwaii a fair bit this year working on various seabird projects. Perhaps our paths will cross. Well done, you've achieved so much. You have succeeded in every respect! Safe journey home, and good rest!

Anonymous said...

It was nice to read your daily stories, you're a very good writer and an inspiring women. I wish you une bonne fin de voyage... (Philippe)

Anonymous said...

Thank you for the journey, Hayley. Have treasured every rich impression you have shared. Your memoirs will be a classic.

Sherry said...

I just love the image I have of you and Ernest having your little chat!
I look forward to what you make from your journey.

Peggy O said...

Thank you for sharing your adventure with us. I'll miss not being able to check in on your journey, but the pictures you have painted for us will remain. I hope to hear more of your trip one day. Travel safe.

Anonymous said...

Hi Hayley: I am relieved that you are finally safe on solid deck, but know your disapointment at an unattainable goal this year. Timing is everything in life, and this year there were just too many obstacles for even the invincible Hayley to leap. I look forward to experiencing your adventure one day with you at home.
Come safe home.
Cheers, Bob@ KIL

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