Following a heroic 24 hours by Anais and Victor in the tent suspended off the anchor chain, today we stepped it all up a notch by bringing in a purpose-built half-tonne survival pod.
I say ‘we’ but in fact I just sat on the safety boat watching in awe at the rigging magic going on at the hands of Anais, Victor, Nazareth and Timo.
Using ropes, chains and all sorts of pulleys, they managed to lift the pod out of the water and stabilise it against the chain where it now hangs some nine metres above the sea.
Maybe I’ve just been staring at this little part-dalek part-marshmellow looking pod for too long today, but I have to say, I’m growing attached to it.
Every time the safety boat drifts towards the bow of the Stena Carren, you get a great view of this tiny friendly yellow bubble, hanging off one of the ship’s two giant anchors.
But the pod isn’t tiny. There’s space for six to sit in there and it’s got all you need to keep going for weeks – a ‘hospital’ (first aid kit), ‘kitchen’ (self-heating meals), and a ‘bathroom’ (not really). But while the pod isn’t tiny in reality, when hanging out the front of a Chevron drill ship it really feels that way.
That’s because the ship is huge. Massive in fact. And unfortunately for us, there are many of them. There are thousands of drill rigs and ships dotted around the world, seeking deeper seabeds and more pristine environments to bore their drills into. And unless we stop them, we’re facing the risk of more Deepwater Horizon spills and a catastrophic rise in global temperatures.
So as I lie in my bunk, trying to wish this mild seasickness into a pleasant rocking sensation, I put my affection for our little survival station down to this:
There is only one pod.
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-- James on the Esperanza
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