Location: Nice, France
Today we started on the final Boat Appreciation. Up the rigging, down in the bilges, even inside the freezer – wherever you looked shipmates could be found cleaning and polishing. The result was a ship that buzzed with activity and sparkled and glistened in the sun. At the end of the day, every single person on board could look back and feel proud about how well they have looked after Argo, not just today, but over the last 50 days. In return Argo has looked after them. This is the end of a 4500nm passage from the Caribbean to Europe. Friendships and memories have been made that will last a lifetime.
As we go back to our homes we will try to share what we saw, how we felt and what we learned with our friends and families. This has been an awesome adventure and there are some great photos we can show you, but there are so many things we will find difficult to fully explain. How we now deeply appreciate things we had never given a second thought about before. How much more pride and respect we have for ourselves. What happens when you just throw your whole life at something so vast and completely new. How we now look at the world with new eyes, full of possibilities and opportunities rather than problems or changes to be feared.
One shipmate told of how, upon arriving in Nice, he had gone ashore to use the public toilets. They were in a real mess. Before the trip he would have turned around, gone to find a different toilet and left the mess for the next person. Instead he found himself cleaning it so that the next person would not have to deal with it. What if everyone viewed the world like that?
I am so proud to have spent the last 48 days with these 28 other people. We have all learned from each other and grown together. I will miss all of them a lot when we go our separate ways tomorrow but each one has had an impact on me that will stay with me forever.