The Wave He Couldn’t
Wakefield was sleeping when the first big wave hit. He’d gone to bed in
a squall. Winds topped 90 kilometres an hour. Waves towered 10 metres
high. Six hundred kilometres north of the Falkland Islands, the storm
lashing at the 57-year-old carpenter and his 40-year-old sailboat was
so loud that he couldn’t sleep without industrial-strength earplugs.
didn’t worry. The boat, Kim Chow, had weathered storms like this before
as Mr. Wakefield piloted her from Victoria.
safe at home, he recounted the harrowing events that cut short his journey
around the world. He was trying to become the first person to complete
a solo circumnavigation of the globe against prevailing winds and currents.
But when that first wave jostled him from bed at 4:30 in the morning on
April 24, 215 days into his journey, that goal must have seemed a fleeting
dream. He thought Kim Chow must have rolled over, but couldn’t tell for
sure. The cabin was a mess. Blood flowed from a gash on his head. He remembers
everything being black. Then he passed out. Read
the story courtesy of Globe Life.