Real-time Earth and Moon phase

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Surfing this 100 ft wave

Surfer Magazine posted this picture and a Breaking News entitled "100-ft wave surfed" in a short article by Correspondent Jason Vasquez:

Details are still a bit blurry, but according to eye-witness accounts, big-wave hellions Rusty Long and Grant “Twiggy” Baker have broken the 100-foot barrier, catching and surfing a sky-scraper-size wave off the coast of Chile’s Isla Alejandra Selkirk, several hundred miles off the coast of mainland Chile.

SURFER received the breaking news via satellite phone from Staff Photographer Todd Glaser, who accompanied the big-wave duo deep into the Pacific in hopes of scoring waves on what Glaser called “Chile’s Cortes Bank.” The photographer was shell-shocked but managed to upload the accompanying photo of Long and Baker dropping in on the monster cold-water right-hander before stormy conditions terminated his sat-phone connection.

That was a awesome looking wave by any means. All thumbs up for the history making surfers!

Update:

Thanks to Louis' comment here's the more absolutely awesome video:

Monday, March 30, 2009

Sailmike Mike's encounter

Most of us are probably never heard of the 16 years old young sailor by the name of Michael Perham. Here's a part of the BBC News report last November:

Michael Perham, 16, from Potters Bar in Hertfordshire is the youngest person to have sailed across the Atlantic alone.

He set out on his latest voyage from Gunwharf Quays, Portsmouth, on his Open 50 Racing Yacht on Saturday morning.

He will be alone at sea for over four months and his only contact with family will be through satellite link-ups.
Well, here's the latest about the young sailor's adventure reporting in Yachting Monthly entitled: Mike Perham knocked down in Southern Ocean. Oh, Mike is doing just fine, he only encountered a freaque wave Thursday night.

Here's from his blog on what had happened:
Thursday night brought with it some strong conditions but I'd set the boat up really well and was totally shipshape. I spent most of the time inside, as that was the safest place to be in these conditions.

During the night we were moving along just fine and I was sitting at the chart table doing some work when a freak wave picked Totallymoney.com up and knocked us down - past 90degrees!

I had to brace my feet on the ceiling and watch my world literally turn on its side. As quick as we went over, the keel and the ballast brought me smartly back upright. Totallymoney.com sailed on as if nothing had happened, showing what a truly remarkable and safe boat she is.

After the momentary shock of being knocked down eased, I shined a torch up at the rig; it looked fine, which was a relief. I immediately did a quick boat check from front to back, and despite a bit of water in the bilges, everything looked just fine. In the main cabin a few bits and bobs had been thrown about off the shelves, it was a bit of a bombshell. One of my 20l diesel tanks had sprung a leak and oil covered the floor turning it into an ice rink. So much for my nice and tidy cabin!
Don't you just admire the cool and calm of this brilliant young sailor alone out there in the Southern Ocean? And a salute to the best designed and built boat also! Here's a picture the Yachting Monthly published:


Check out the web site of Sailmike -- Mike Perham World Challenge. We wish all the very best winds for Mike all the way!

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Canoe trip turns treacherous

Here is a terrific story about a canoe trip in the Travel Section of philly.com this morning by Richard K. Taylor.

The author first told us about their second thoughts about their first thought on the decision of the trip:
Had we realized the danger ahead, we would have reconsidered before paddling our old, 16-foot aluminum canoe for two miles across Maine's Frenchman Bay to Ironbound Island. But we'd canoed together for the entire 22 years of our marriage. This relatively smooth bay posed no problem - or so we thought.
Then he practically took onto their canoe for the ride:

On the water, we could see the misty outline of Maine's famous Mount Desert Island seven miles ahead. To our left, the six-mile-wide mouth of the bay opened dazzlingly into the Atlantic Ocean.

But it was a beautiful day, with bright blue sky and temperatures in the 70s. Wavelets did a happy tap dance on the canoe's bow. The cool, salty air was invigorating. Gray harbor seals swam by gracefully, looking up at us with great, dark, wary eyes.

The canoe rose on the two-foot-high ocean swells coming down the bay, then sank into the sparkling trough between them. Topping the next wave, we glimpsed the jagged, perpendicular, 100-foot cliffs of Ironbound Island. After an hour of paddling, we were close enough to see that the massive granite rock was punctuated by dark caves and narrow, shaded clefts.

We became intrigued with one of these openings, a 10-foot-wide, 50-foot-deep cut in the towering rock. After studying it carefully, we saw that the approaching waves didn't so much break into it as smoothly fill it, rising up its dark walls, splashing into its farthest corners, and then retreating with a loud chatter of overturned pebbles.

We eased the canoe to the entrance, waited for an in-bound wave, then paddled with it until the narrow walls of the cleft rose on both sides, ending in a sliver of blue sky and scurrying clouds.

For a half-hour, we rocked back and forth on the swells, taking care not to smash against the walls. We examined the purple rockweed, the dozens of orange and red starfish clinging to crevices, and the thousands of barnacles cemented there. We listened to the tumbling pebbles and the sucking sound of water rising and falling in this confined but beautiful space.

Exiting was simple - a wave swept us out neatly, and we backstroked until we could turn parallel to the shore once again.

Emboldened by our exhilarating foray, we failed to study the next notch as carefully as the first. A long shelf of solid rock lay across its entrance, but it was acting as a breakwater, the waves sloshing across it and making for a relatively placid stretch of water just before the cleft's mouth. None of the waves were breaking dangerously. It looked easy to paddle in behind the shelf, then turn and slip into the narrow opening.

which really makes us feel like that we were there too. Now the culmination:

Just as we attempted this maneuver, however, a large rogue wave came crashing over the shelf and into the canoe, dumping 6 inches of seawater into it. We reversed direction with rapid backstrokes, only to be hit by another breaker that doubled the volume of water at our feet. Now the canoe was rocking dangerously, with the heavy weight of the seawater shifting from side to side.

Two more muscle-straining backstrokes pulled us away and into calmer water. Trembling with exhaustion, adrenaline and fright, we bailed furiously until our craft steadied and was controllable again. We paddled back to Grindstone, kicking ourselves all the way, not only for failing to examine the notch more carefully, but also for risking our lives so casually. If we had tipped over, we never could have climbed Ironbound's cliffs, and the 50-degree water would have brought us almost instant hypothermia.

Back in town, we told our tale to a lobsterman who said, in the laconic tone of Mainers, "Probably not a good idea to go out there again. We like to spend our time lobstering, not dragging for dead bodies."

Yes indeed, if I can have a choice, I would certainly prefer enjoy eating lobster than on the canoe. But I really enjoyed reading their adventure -- not at all wishing that I were there.

"Who painted it?"


Considered yourself severely under informed if you have not heard this story yet because your news providers are trying their best to hide this story from you.

This news, from Catholic News agency, is actually a sad story. Sad, because of the rampage stupidity and ignorance in the high places of the current U.S. Administration:

.- During her recent visit to Mexico, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton made an unexpected stop at the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe and left a bouquet of white flowers “on behalf of the American people,” after asking who painted the famous image.

The image of Our Lady of Guadalupe was miraculously imprinted by Mary on the tilma, or cloak, of St. Juan Diego in 1531. The image has numerous unexplainable phenomena, such as the appearance on Mary’s eyes of those present in the room when the tilma was opened and the image’s lack of decay.

Mrs. Clinton was received on Thursday at 8:15 a.m. by the rector of the Basilica, Msgr. Diego Monroy.

Msgr. Monroy took Mrs. Clinton to the famous image of Our Lady of Guadalupe, which had been previously lowered from its usual altar for the occasion.

After observing it for a while, Mrs. Clinton asked “who painted it?” to which Msgr. Monroy responded “God!

God bless America! (Our Lady of Guadalupe, pray for us!)


Fifth Sunday in Lent

O meek Savior and Prince of Peace, implant in me the virtues of gentleness and patience. Let me curb the fury of anger and restrain all resentment and impatience so as to overcome evil with good, attain your peace, and rejoice in your love.

O Model of humility, divest me of all pride and arrogance. Let me acknowledge my weakness and sinfulness, so that I may bear mockery and contempt for your sake and esteem myself as lowly in your sight.

O Teacher of abstinence, help me to serve you rather than our appetites. Keep me from gluttony - the inordinate love of food and drink and let me hunger and thirst for your justice.

O Lover of purity, remove all lust from my heart, so that I may serve you with a pure mind and a chaste body.

O Father of the poor, help me to avoid all covetousness for earthly goods and give me a love for heavenly things. Inspire me to give to the needy, just as you gave your life that I might inherit eternal treasures.

O Exemplar of love, keep me from all envy and ill-will. Let the grace of your love dwell in me that I may rejoice in the happiness of others and bewail their adversities.

O zealous Lover of souls, keep me from all sloth of mind or body. Inspire me with zeal for your glory, so that I may do all things for you and in you.

Amen


(From EWTN)

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Accidental shark bite

Accidental shark bite?

Yep, the title of the story was "Freak accident puts teeth mark into angler's thigh" in this South African Weekend Post today by reporter Shaanaaz de Jager. I generally ignore stories like this. But this one is mildly interesting:

IN a freak incident, a Port Elizabeth angler was injured by an “accidental shark bite” near the Sundays River Mouth yesterday while assisting in an angling competition.

EP Shore Angling Association member Tony Dell, 59, a Proteas shore angling coach, was assisting a Free State angler reel in a ragged-tooth shark during the Free State Shore Angling Competition when it happened.

“A wave gave buoyancy to the shark and pushed the 150kg raggy against his leg. The shark‘s top jaw got caught in Dell‘s calf,” said EP Shore Angling Association chairman Richard Prinsloo.

Dell was not competing and was merely guiding the Free State anglers. Prinsloo described the incident as an accident.

I dislike the use of the adjective "freak" where ever it is used. Somehow a "wave gave buoyancy to the shark and pushed the 150kg raggy against his leg" should be classified as a rare of the rare events. It may never happen again. But again it's a large world out there. Anything can happen. Who could ever believe a community organizer can managed to occupy the 1600 Pennsylvania Ave in D.C.? That was no accident, but a connivingly schemed plot to sabotage U. S. Constitution that caught American people off guard. So American people got much more than a shark bite. Well, I digress. Anyway back to the story, we can at least regard Mr. Dell as very lucky because obviously the shark was not hungry at that time!

Friday, March 27, 2009

Good Samaritan to the rescue

This breaking news just reported in the Tempa Bay Online on a good ending case happened earlier today:
Photo by Cliff McBride

A good Samaritan rescued four people clinging to an overturned boat near the Sunshine Skyway Bridge this morning, St. Petersburg Fire and Rescue workers say.

Three-foot waves and winds reaching 25 knots caused the 19-foot boat to capsize just south of the bridge at 11:20 a.m., Lt. Brad Dykens said. The captain of the boat, Brad Buckley, 60, of Palmetto, blamed a rogue wave for the mishap.

A commercial charter fishing boat called "The Hub" rescued the four people thrown into the water. None was wearing a life jacket, Dykens said.

The fishing boat brought the rescued boaters to O'Neill's Marina, 6701 34th Street South. St. Petersburg Fire and Rescue workers examined them and said all are in good condition except for minor scrapes and bruises.

The Coast Guard towed the capsized boat to Maximo Marina, Deputy Fire Marshal Joel Granata said.

Four lucky people thankful to the good Samaritan of the commercial charter fishing boat "The Hub". Next time hope they'll at least remember wearing their life jacket.

U. S. the Constitutional Republic!


I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America,
And to the Republic for which it stands:
One Nation under God, indivisible,
With Liberty and Justice for all.

Yes, America, our system is a Constitutional Republic. Don't be alarmed to read this terrific article entitled "The United States of America Is Not a Democracy!" by Frank Salvato of New Media Journal. Here are the essence everyone should remember:
The word Democracy does not appear in the Declaration of Independence or the United States Constitution...and for good reason. The United States is not a Democracy. It is a Constitutional Republic and it is essential that the American people understand this reality. If we continue to allow the untruth that the United States of America is a Democracy to flourish we invite the demise of our government and our nation; we invite the cessation of the American Experiment and doom future generations to a fate unknown.

Over the course of our day-to-day activities we enjoy freedoms and liberties that have been established by our founding documents -- The Charters of Freedom. These documents consist of: The Declaration of Independence, The United States Constitution and The Bill of Rights. These documents established a Constitutional Republic; a nation, ruled by a government based on the rule of law, laws enacted by governmental representatives elected by the people.

But as we exist today, many among us -- including many of the more popular pundits, political activists, special interest groups and even many elected officials -- erroneously refer to our system of government as a Democracy. In fact, our Founders and Framers understood a Democracy to be a dangerous vehicle that, given time, would devolve into mob rule or government by majority; a government where the minority had little or no voice; a government unrestrained in it reach into our lives. It is for this specific reason that the Founders and Framers established our nation as a Constitutional Republic; a nation based on the rule of law and not the rule of men.
So remember always: WE, the people of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquillity, provide for common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

God bless America!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

130 years young!


There was a census in Karaganda in northern Kazakhstan, the central Asian state Demographers were astonished to discovered Sakhan Dosova - a mother of ten - and find she was also on Stalin's first census of the region in 1926 when her age was given as 47. According to U.K. Daily Mail, she is ready to celebrate her 130th birthday.

Take a look at the above document indicating her birth date: March 27, 1879.

Sakhan says she has never visited a doctor nor eaten sweets. She is addicted to cottage cheese and puts her longevity down to her sense of humour.

Daily Mail also provided these historical facts:

The year 1879 also saw Edison present his new invention - the light bulb. It was the year that Stalin and Einstein were born, the Anglo-Zulu war started, and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle published his first story. U.K. people will recall that was the year "Queen Victoria still had 22 more years to rule in Britain and Disraeli was prime minister. "

Prime Minister Disraeli?

Yes, Benjamin Disraeli (1804-1881). He was the one that supposedly to have said "There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics." (Among others including Mark Twain according to this.)

Happy Birthday Sakhan Dosova!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

A Water craft accident

This news just in. It happened this afternoon at Clearwater Beach, Florida:

Clearwater Beach, Florida -- A father and son on spring break from Illinois are both recovering from serious injuries following a freak wave runner explosion on the beach behind the Sheraton Sand Key Resort.

The accident happened shortly before 2:30 Tuesday.

Investigators say 43-year-old Christopher Jahntz had rented the personal water craft and was showing his 15-year-old son Christian how it operated.

When the father tried to start the ignition, the watercraft exploded without warning. Both he and his son were thrown into the water.

The Pinellas County Sheriff's Office Marine Patrol, Coast Guard crews, Clearwater Fire Rescue, and Florida Fish and Wildlife officers all responded to the scene.

A family on spring break from Minneapolis jumped in the water to help pull the father and son to safety before they were transported to local hospitals.

The father, Christopher Jahntz, suffered a minor head injury, but was released late Tuesday afternoon. His son still remained at Morton Plant Hospital.

So it is not only waves or freaque waves are hazardous on the beach. Using equipments can also be extremely dangerous as this news shows. It's certainly unexpected, so it's freaque, but not waves. The personal water craft, also known as a "wave runner", is clearly not an easy toy for the un-experienced. Fortunately the father and son were only injured in this case.

"The Great Global Warming Swindle"

This 74 minutes documentary film, "The Great Global Warming Swindle", is my all time favorite film. I think it should be the best of the best all time scientific documentary ever. Thankfully the producer has chosen to make the film freely available online for everyone to see for good reasons. The most fundamental reason would be for the scientific merit it carries. I first watched it and liked it immediately two years ago when it was premiered on U.K.'s Channel 4 and available on the internet shortly after. Today I watched it again and I like it even more. I post it here as a blog entry simply for the convenience that I could readily watch it again and again.

I know 74 minutes represent a large chunk of time for today's busy persons, unlike an emeritus person like me. But the beauty of internet is that you don't have to watch it all at once. You can always watch part of it, and come back later and watch it again. Believe me, it will well worth of your time.

I also hesitate to recommend my former colleagues watching this at work. Because the current scientific culture regarding global warming or climate change is not amendable for alternative view points. Global warming or climate change have become more religious than science. Younger scientists generally don't have the liberty to think about real science. Nevertheless, I encourage them to watch it at home and after works. Again, it is well worth your time. A phrase comes to my mind is "Truth will set you free!" (John, 8:32)

So watch it here now!

P.S.

In the two years since the release of the film, because of the controversial nature it has subjected to all kinds of complains and criticisms, most of them are of minor, hair-splitting kinds, the film stands on its own ground firmly. See for instance those discussed in Wikipedia. Of particular interest is that there were at least 19 world renown scientists appeared in the film, only two seemed to have second thoughts. While Eigil Friis-Christensen clamoring about different interpretations of the data, Carl Wunch complained about a familiar tone of being misled. To this respect the program responded:
But we told him we were going to explore the issues of the counter argument to global warming and he got the same letter as everyone else, and no-one else claimed they didn't know what they'd be appearing on.
Of course no one would ever admit it to the possible influence under the tyrannical hierarchy through peer pressure, lucrative funding, and other tricks. While the film explored science issues, the topic has sadly been out of the science realm long time ago and working scientists have very little scientific liberty left in the face of government-special interests axis!

Monday, March 23, 2009

A pair of storm wave videos on Atlantic and Pacific

I wondered onto this metacafe site and found this storm wave video made during crossing Atlantic Ocean some time during the autumn of 2007 by ArtursD. It's a good, well done video with lots of detailed views on waves and wave effects. I couldn't do it any better even if I were out there myself. (Thank God, I was not.) For wave watching aficionados this is the real thing!


Storm With Force 10 By Beaufort Scale In Atlantic Ocean

And then here's another one also by ArtursD. for the Pacific's with these descriptions:
I shoot this video in Pacific ocean when we sailed to Korea and encountered with very rough sea. The weather was actually very calm - no wind and the sun was shining. Funny, isn't it?
For reference, the 170m long ship was fully loaded and had a freebord height of only 4m. Therefore the waves were flushing on the deck so often. Enjoy it!
Somehow seeing all the waves while the weather was calm and no wind is not very easy to comprehend:


Storm With No Wind In Pacific Ocean

Scenes of a weekend tea party

You probably haven't heard. The zombie drive-by media types certainly wish to hide it from you all. But there was a Tea Party in Orlando this weekend. What a party it was! Americans are waking up.
God bless America!









My sincere appreciation to Pereiraville and Instapundit for these wonderful pictures. Go visit them. They have many, many more.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Aging gracefully

I come across an article by Faiza Elmasry in VOA News, entitled "Centenarians provide model for aging gracefully",which I think is another good topic for a blog. In less than two month my aunt Sanyih will be 98 years old, but in her mind she is already 100. I think the important thing is that she thinks she can live many more years beuond that. I talk to Sanyih on the phone from time to time, it was always an enjoyable thing for me to do.

This VOA News article listed a few traits that researchers found centenarians have in common are:
  • The most prominent trait is a love of life, which includes a sense of humor.
  • Then a positive, yet realistic attitude.
  • Third is a strong spiritual or religious belief.
  • Fpurth is personal courage, because it's not easy growing older, and there are a lot of things that can go wrong.
  • Last, and also most important, is a remarkable ability to renegotiate life at every turn and to accept changes with aging and not let it to stop them.
These are given by Lynn Adler who has been working closely with centenarians for more than two decades and is the author of a book "Centenarians: Bonus Years."

The article also quoted Thomas Perls, Physician and reseqrcher, as "That positive attitude toward life and oneself is part of what makes many centenarians such inspiring role models. Another important lesson young people can learn from these remarkable seniors is that healthy lifestyle choices early on in lifeare key to living healthier . . . and living longer."

I am still a few years before getting closer to the centenarian stage, so I count myself as one of the young people looking forward to join their ranks one of these days!

Fourth Sunday in Lent

Ephesians 2:4-10

God loved us with so much love that he was generous with his mercy: when we were dead through our sins, he brought us to life with Christ - it is through grace that you have been saved - and raised us up with him and gave us a place with him in heaven, in Christ Jesus.

This was to show for all ages to come, through his goodness towards us in Christ Jesus, how infinitely rich he is in grace. Because it is by grace that you have been saved, through faith; not by anything of your own, but by a gift from God; not by anything that you have done, so that nobody can claim the credit. We are God's work of art, created in Christ Jesus to live the good life as from the beginning he had meant us to live it.




Friday, March 20, 2009

Boat smarts

My insurance agent sends me all kind of commercial mails from time to time including a news letter kind of magazine. I usually don't pay much attention to them. One of the recent ones carried a small article called "Boat Smarts" that listed two general statistics I find they are worthy of some attention which may or may not be widely known:
  • Wear a life jacket. More than two-thirds of fatal boating accident victims drawn -- 90 percent of those victims don't wear life jackets.
  • Be careful in small powered watercraft. Three of every four boaters who drawn use vessels less than 21 feet long.
I did not check the accuracy of these statistics, I assumed that they were based on reliable sources. Though not really surprising, these numbers tend to be higher than I otherwise would have anticipated. At any rate wearing a life jacket and avoiding small boats if you can will always be good advices to live by! I advocate wearing a life jacket even when you are on the beach area. Moreover if possible wear a helmet also! You can't be too careful for your own safety!

The rambling hands

My hat-tip to the Drudge Report this morning for an appropriate title for a timely picture in the news:

GUTTER BALL!
Take a closer and careful look at those rambling hands that are holding yours, mine, and the country's fate in the next four years. Are you happy now? (He ain't even mentally qualified for the Special Olympics.)

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Happening at Oregon Inlet

According to Wikipedia Oregon Inlet is "an inlet along North Carolina's Outer Banks. It joins the Pamlico Sound with the Atlantic Ocean and separates Bodie Island from Pea Island, which are connected by a 2.5 mile bridge that spans the inlet. As one of the few access points to the ocean along this stretch of coast, Oregon Inlet is a major departure point for charter fishing trips, with a nearby harbor serving as the base for many large boats that travel miles out towards the Gulf Stream almost every day."

Here's a tranquil and serene scenery of Oregon Inlet and Bridge.


Now here's the local news reported at WNCT this morning by Stephanie Moore:
A Coast Guard rescue ended successfully early Wednesday evening.

Officials say a rescue boat crew towed a disabled vessel to safety, after it was hit by a rogue wave near Oregon Inlet.

They say the owner called the Coast Guard soon after he was hit by the wave.

The crew of station Oregon Inlet towed the boat to safe water in order to rescue the owner.

The owner is expected to recover the boat today.
Well, freaque waves happen any places at any time. Yes, even in a serene, tranqil place like the above picture. Be prepared!

What's he looking?


Hey what's he looking?
Aren't you frightened that those eyes are looking at you, America?
For a man whose vision goes only as far as his teleprompter,
What could he possibly see?
(It's really what do the puppeteers behind him see?)

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Forces of nature -- A philosophy of surfing


When we are thinking about surfing, I think most of us will be immediately visualizing in our mind those impressive and exciting surfing pictures. We generally take for granted that those are what surfers do, including those occasional wipe outs while we marvel the unbelievable abilities and skills of the surfers. I doubt that any of us have ever, if at all, stop to wonder how those surfers really feel.

Well, the Bleacher Report just published an article by Steven Ward that described, rather poetically, how a surfer feels during those surfing moments. The article is entitled "Forces of Nature: How Surfing Rescued Me" but I think it could also be considered as philosophy of surfing. Here's the opening paragraph:
There are very few feelings in one's lifetime that actually inebriate the senses to such a degree that a separation of spirit from flesh occurs in a mere instant of time. It is not necessarily induced by speed, nor as a result of gravitational thrust, but more so as a result of a transition from one state of consciousness to another by unregulated energy while suspended amid a quasi-natural stance or standing.
Does anyone ever regard surfing as "a separation of spirit from flesh occurs in a mere instant of time"?

As we are used to seeing giant waves in west coast California, north shore Oahu, or other surfing places in the world, the author learned surfing at New Smyrna Beach, Florida. He contends:
East Coast waves, comparably small, are capable, especially when the offshore waters entertained passing hurricanes, of delivering powerful swells toward the shores while the riders waited patiently their deliverance. As hurricane season proceeded, we would maintain a wary eye, watching, waiting, even praying the Outer Banks would summon and we'd be off in search of our own "Perfect Wave."
East Coast includes:
Cape Hatteras, N.C. allotted me the largest, most furious wave I ever attempted to conquer. This took place while a hurricane danced offshore, feeding this beautiful beach a constant, ever increasing supply of huge, hungry swells.
For us non-surfers, the article accounted some real feeling and sensation of surfing:

I remember paddling, the wave up under me, and suddenly a drop that seemed an eternity. I tried to hold on, but I doubt if I made it halfway down the wave when I lost it. The speed was incredible, but the force of the swell was what I really recall. A wipeout at such heights is never a good thing, but here amid a hurricane swell—well, thank God we survived. It took a great deal of battling the laws of nature, but we finally found solid ground.

It wasn't that wave that filled me with an unsurpassed awe, but waves in general; a collective gathering of large and small, each one in possession of its own identity. The sport of Surfing rescued me when I was a fledgling teen and allowed me to claim something very special, very personal, and a link to nature at its various and tedious strength. Indeed a Force of Nature!

That's it! I guess the pursuance of all surfers is essentially seeking to "claim something very special, very personal, and a link to nature." Aren't that what we all seeking in life in different pursuance anyway? I find his perception of waves in general: "a collective gathering of large and small, each one in possession of its own identity" is rather refreshing. For a ocean wave researcher, I especially conscious of the fact that scientific research has been basically aimed at suppress those identities and forcing those "large and small" waves to obey an artifical "model" in the never never land. Many of those wave researchers, I reckon, seldom if ever, ventured out into the real ocean, myself included. I always admire the surfers because they are the ones really facing up to the nearshore waves, day in and day out, no models of any kind can help them surf better or easier!

P.S.

The picture at the beginning of this blog was the picture accompanied the article with no photo credit. I assume it was a picture of the author.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Mystery on a calm night

This sad news from New Zealand, reported by Kay Blundell of the Dominion Post, is rather depressing to read:
Mystery surrounds the deaths of two experienced Levin fishermen whose boat took on water and later sank.

Grieving relatives say the men's 4.2-metre aluminium boat found with just its tip protruding from the water before it disappeared may have been flooded by a rogue wave or hit a submerged object.

Steven Michael Militch, 55, and Billy Tane Apiata, 51, were found in calm seas on a moonlit night about 4.5 kilometres off the Horowhenua coast, just south of Hokio Beach, about 2.30am yesterday.

Mr Apiata was dead but Mr Militch was still warm. The men, who worked together at the local meatworks, were found 1km apart after a four-hour sea and air search. They still wore their lifejackets in the warm water.

They had set out for a day's fishing on Monday morning. The alarm was raised about 9.30pm when Mr Militch's son saw his father's vehicle and boat trailer near Waitarere. Divers found the boat upside down in 27m of water last night. Police said there were no signs of damage to the hull and it would be inspected further today.

Maritime New Zealand was investigating and the coroner would determine the causes of death.

Search co-ordinator Sergeant Bill Nicholson said: "It is mysterious we do not know what made the boat tip in or how long they had been in the water."

When Mr Militch was pulled from the water, rescuers hoped he would survive. "They noticed he was still warm, rushed him to Foxton boat ramp to meet a Westpac rescue helicopter but, when paramedics checked for vital signs, he was already dead."

Another mysterious incident nearby five years ago claimed the lives of three men. Their boat was never found.

Kapiti coastguard president Rob Faulke said conditions were near-perfect. "The moon was stronger than our spotlights. They had lifejackets, a radio. I can only surmise being in the water so long caused their deaths."

The only equipment they did not have was a marine locator beacon.

Mr Militch's brother, Peter, believed a rogue wave engulfed the boat or it hit an object. "He would not have done anything dangerous. He was devoted to his family, the church and would take time out to do anything for anybody."

Mr Apiata's stepdaughter Marcy Anderson said fishing was his time out. "It was sad Tangaroa [god of the sea] took him."

Because the cause is still a mystery, being it was a calm day, if the mishap was caused by a wave, the was would likely to be a freaque wave. But no one can be certain about it at any rate. Just a sad mystery.

I learned the new word "Tangaroa" being the Polynesian sea-god. In Polynesian mythology, according to Micha F. Lindemans, Tangaroa separated the sky from the earth and
He is a son the earth-goddess Papa, who had so much water in her body that it swelled one day and burst forth, becoming the ocean. He may appear as a huge fish giving birth to all the sea creatures, including mermen and mermaids. From the latter sprang humanity, according to certain myths, so people are really fish who have lost their fish-like appearance. Others say also that human beings were once aquatic, hence their hairlessness. Tangaroa changes regularly into a green lizard, signifying fine weather. He only needs to breath once in 24 hours, so huge is he (this breathing explains the tidal movement).
What an imaginative story! May be AlgoreJimmyHansen can use it to figure out a more convincing mumble jumble to blame human beings for causing global warming.

Longhope lifeboat tragedy 03/17/1969

BBC News remembers the lifeboat TGB of Longhope, Scotland that was capsized on 17 March, 1969, after setting out from Hoy in Orkney, to help a tanker adrift in a fierce storm:

On the night of the tragedy, the Liberian-registered Irene had sent out a mayday reporting it was in trouble.

A Force 9 gale, coupled with a spring tide, led to waves 60ft high.

The TGB, a 47ft Watson-class lifeboat constructed of wood, went to its aid in conditions of near-zero visibility.

Radio contact was later lost. The lifeboat is believed to have been overturned by a freak wave, possibly 100ft (30.5m) high.

When the boat was recovered, the bodies of all but one of the crew were inside the hull. The coxwain was still at the helm.

The tragedy led to the redevelopment of self-righting lifeboats, now all lifeboats are self-righting by design. There's a bronze memorial unveiled by the Queen Mother to commemorate the eight brave people of TGB lifeboat. On the other hand,
It later emerged the Irene was closer to shore than initially reported, and its crew were brought ashore safely.
Life does have unwitting twists at times -- all because of a 100 ft high freaque wave!

Happy St. Patrick's Day


Christ beside me, Christ before me, Christ behind me
King of my heart;

Christ within me, Christ below me, Christ above me
never to part.

Christ on my right hand, Christ on my left hand, Christ all around me
shield in strife;

Christ in my sleeping, Christ in my sitting, Christ in my rising
light of my life
.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Two happenings over the weekend

A couple of news items that kept freaque waves in the news. First reported by KITV of Honolulu yesterday:
A fisherman died in rough seas on Saturday.

Rescue crews battled wind, rain, cold temperatures and big surf trying to find the missing man.

It was about 8 a.m. that a 25-foot Proline fishing boat ran into trouble. Honolulu Fire department rescue crews got the call of a man overboard.

Marina patrol officials said the vessel was heading out on the Portlock side of Maunalua Bay when it was hit by a rogue wave.

"They tried to turn the boat around to rescue him, but apparently they lost sight of him in rough waters out there. During the course of trying to rescue him, one of the other fishermen jumped in, tried to stay with him, but somehow they got separated," Honolulu Police Department Lt. Gerrit Kurihara said.

Harbor marina officers assisted the fire department in getting divers and HFD's helicopter to the area where the man was last seen.
Unfortunately
The rescue crews managed to find the missing fisherman. Police said the missing 62-year-old man was initially described as "extremely critical" and was to be taken to Straub Hospital, but died before arriving there.

God bless his soul!

Then a half way across the globe in Wales News today:

A SURFER was hailed a hero yesterday after saving a dog walker swept into the sea by a freak wave.

The unnamed 44-year-old pet owner, thought to be from Caerau, near Maesteg, was walking his dog along the breakwater pier at Port Talbot when a huge wave engulfed them and sent the pair into the icy waters of the Bristol Channel.

A Sea King search and rescue helicopter from RAF Chivenor in Devon and the South Wales Police helicopter were sent to help the crew of Port Talbot’s Royal National Lifeboat Institution D-Class rigid inflatable vessel in the operation.

But it was a surfer enjoying yesterday morning’s bright sunshine who plucked the man to safety.

Thank God for the unnamed surfer. I have walked a number of times along a breakwater pier at different places before. I thank the Almighty God for kept the freaque waves away when I was there. Otherwise I probably won't be here blogging. Deo Gratias!

Man-made sea level raising

Here's another master piece of Gerald Warner's column in the U.K. Telegraph:

Nothing raises the sea level so quickly as a recession. With the general public relegating trendy climate-change anxieties to the back burner as people struggle to hold onto their jobs and homes, politicians are hastily rearranging their priorities in tandem. Since this threatens the flow of billions of pounds and dollars to UN-friendly scientists who have signed up to the man-made climate change hoax perpetrated by the IPCC, these mendicants have to up the ante.

They did so in caricature fashion at Copenhagen. Climate scare-mongering has now reached so hysterical a height of extravagance it is becoming counter-productive. Every rabbit is being pulled out of the hat: they are competing now to predict ever higher sea-level increases, in a kind of Dutch auction. Two years ago the prediction ranged from 18cm to 29cm; at Copenhagen it was ratcheted up to 120 cm. Any advance on 120 cm?

They have even, in their desperation, returned to the (for them) embarrassing topic of the supposed depletion of the Antarctic ice sheet - a myth recently exploded. The Antarctic ice sheet is growing. Still the alarmists predict the inundation of East Anglia, Essex (if only!) and just about everywhere short of Ben Nevis.

The alarmists know a trick or two. They are particularly fond of measuring sea levels around Hong Kong: that city is sinking into a bed of sediment which produces very satisfactory statistics for its relationship to the water level, provided one ignores the fact that it is Hong Kong that is descending rather than the sea ascending. Venice is a favoured location too.

What this is all about is the constant need to replenish the coffers of those scientists who have taken the UN's shilling by sounding ever more urgent alarms, in the hope that public opinion will compel governments to keep on paying Danegeld to climate-change alarmists. As the recession deepens, improvident bankers and the global warming industry are the last remaining beneficiaries of the public purse deemed sacrosanct. The Al Gore brigade intends to keep it that way, so do not be surprised if the salt water rises over your chin shortly - in the computer model if not in real life.

I sort of know that Hong Kong is slowly sinking, but no one seems to be particularly alarmed. But I am surprised to learn that Hong Kong can be used this way to fool people.

First thing first -- Get US out of UN, get UN out of US! Who cares about IPCC?

The commies rain on his parade

What happens to our country lately? A lot. But you will not get them from the zombie, drive-by, media in the main stream by any means. Strangely a columnist of U.K. Telegraph, Gerald Warner, in his column today described just in a few paragraphs:

Calm down, dear, it's only a depression. Barack Obama and his team have changed tactics, in response to the popularity rating of The One falling below the level enjoyed by George W Bush at the same stage in his presidency. That may be all right for flesh-and-blood presidents, but it should not happen to a messiah.

So, from fear that the grim commentary on the US recession in which Obama has hitherto indulged, with a view to discrediting the Bush heritage, is back-firing because the public now regards him as fully in charge and therefore responsible, the new style is upbeat. Seizing upon a few flimsy straws in the wind that might support cautious optimism - the chief executives of Citigroup, Bank of America and J P Morgan all reporting modest profitability recently - the White House began talking up the green shoots of recovery.

Unfortunately this coincided with Obama reverting to human rights issues in China, after Hillary Clinton had attracted heavy criticism by side-stepping such questions during her recent visit to Beijing. So Barack reckoned it might go down well with his Yeti-hugging constituency to smack down Beijing for its treatment of Tibet. He forgot the kind of people he was dealing with. Within 24 hours Chinese premier Wen Jiabao took a fierce revenge by talking down the reliability of US Treasury bonds.

"To be honest, I'm a little bit worried," Wen confided at a news conference. "I request the US to honour its promises and to guarantee the safety of China's assets. We have lent a huge amount of money to the United States." Ouch! That hurt. It was a sharp reminder, from a regime that knows all about control and reprisals, that a government that holds $727.4 billion of US Treasury Bonds does not have to take any moralising sermons from Obama.

The merest anticipation in the markets that China was contemplating any level of divestiture of US Treasuries could send American interest rates soaring. China's trade surplus is already a key factor in keeping US rates down. With this kind of leverage, while America is trying to grope its way out of recession, China wields immense power. Wen commands foreign exchange reserves of just under $2 trillion and he who pays the piper calls the tune.

When Wen says "Jump", Obama's team asks "How high?" The Chinese premier's comment provoked panic in the White House. "There's no safer investment in the world than in the United States," insisted Obama's spokesman Robert Gibbs. It may be some time before Obama returns to the two forbidden topics of Tibet and the overvalued yuan. For the moment, he will restrict himself to telling an unimpressed electorate that happy days are here again. In reality, America's economic strength is so depleted that Red China can cut the US President down to size.

I put emphasise on the last two paragraphs because I have indeed heard from the radio news telling us to the effect that happy days are here again. The news people would most certainly never telling us that the Messish's s popularity rating is way down only 50 days into his office. It is really frightening to learn that in just a few weeks since January 20, 2009, America's economic strength is so depleted that the Commie regime thugs can "cut the US President down to size. Do the American people get the true message yet?

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Third Sunday in Lent

Hail Holy Queen
Hail, holy Queen,
mother of mercy,
our life, our sweetness,
and our hope.
To thee do we cry,
poor banished children of Eve.
To thee do we send up our sighs, mourning
and weeping in this valley of tears.
Turn then, most gracious advocate,
thine eyes of mercy toward us,
and after this our exile
show unto us the blessed fruit of thy womb, Jesus.
O clement, O loving, O sweet Virgin Mary.

Pray for us, O Holy Mother of God.
That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.
Amen

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Pi Day 2009

Sets in between the Friday of March the 13th and the Ides of March, today is the Pi day of 2009. To honor this fascinating irrational number, allow me to post some tidbits which may or mat not be readily well-known to everyone, at least not to me :
  • Pi as a number that starts with 3.14 will continue without an end, the highest number of digits that have carried out at the present seems to be 51 Billion by University of Tokyo according to this Pi-Search Page. Here's a table listing all the historical efforts on calculating Pi. (The table is not free from mistakes though. The first effort, done by hand, by William shank (1812-1882) was accomplished in 1873 -- not 1807 -- and only accurate to 527 places according to Wikipedia. )
  • Archimedes is probably one of the earliest to study pi with this proposition in the book of "The works of Archimedes"
  • William Shank used the formula developed by John Machin in 1706:
  • A modern formula known as the BBP formula for Pi according to Bailey:
  • How many digits of Pi a person can remember? Well, hundreds. In a 2008 discussion, a guy claimed that his niece memorized 2205. But the newspaper article he cited is no longer available. My question is really why?
Happy Pi Day 2008!


P.S.

I intended to post this blog on March 14th, at 1:59 pm EDT. I missed by a few minutes. Oh well, who's counting anyway!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Another fisherman lost

A fisherman was knocked out of this boat supposedly by a freaque wave. According to Times-Srandard:

The search for a fisherman reported missing early Wednesday morning after reportedly falling overboard about 16 miles out to sea has been suspended.

David Burns Morgan, 48, of Eureka fell overboard at about 10:45 p.m. Tuesday, reportedly after a rogue wave hit the trawler Stormbringer. The captain, Carroll Johnson, apparently threw a life ring to Morgan but the deckhand was unresponsive.

”They said they could see him under the surface for a little bit,” said U.S. Coast Guard Lt. Russ Merrick.

The rogue wave apparently knocked out the Stormbringer's radio, and Johnson couldn't get cellular service, according to the Humboldt County Sheriff's Office. The boat motored into Humboldt Bay, and the Sheriff's Office said Johnson and the other deckhand Ryan Roe, of King Salmon, unloaded the fish on board.

The men told sheriff's deputies they then called 411 to get a number for the U.S. Coast Guard and reported the incident at about 2 a.m. The Coast Guard launched a helicopter to the site of the apparent accident, but failed to find any evidence of Morgan. The Coast Guard suspended the search Wednesday.

The news report did not mention, but it appears that the fisherman who fell overboard did not wear a life jacket. Another tragedy for the records.

Beachgoers' safety

The Half Moon Bay Review carried a good timely commentary by Clay Lambert yesterday. It started by reporting a pair of recent tragedies:
Sometimes the mysteries associated with tragedy at sea are as deep as the ocean itself.

Two people – one a young man reportedly from the South Bay, the other a local teenager – lost their lives in the waters off our coast within 24 hours last week. The first tragedy occurred at Poplar Beach on Sunday. Beachgoers spotted a body floating offshore. Authorities found kite surfing gear nearby and theorized it belonged to the lifeless young man they pulled from the water. Then, on Monday morning, rescue crews from several local, state and federal agencies combed the area after a friend reported a 17-year-old boy had been swept to sea. Later Monday, officials called off that search without ever finding the boy.
Then the main thrust:
Today, the circumstances of each terrible event are as murky as the ocean bottom. We may never know why two apparently healthy young people fell victim to the Pacific. But we can all resolve to take precautions so that it doesn’t happen to us.Even when seemingly serene, the ocean can be a mighty and living thing. Be aware of your surroundings and know that you don’t have to be in the water to fall victim to it.

Rogue waves – swells much larger than the regular sets coming ashore – can crash on shore at any time. They are powerful enough to drag you into the water. Stay off jetties or other rock formations that could quickly leave you stranded.

Be mindful of the weather whenever you are around the ocean. Don’t swim alone. Know what to do if you are caught in a rip current (don’t fight it – swim parallel to shore until you can make your way back).

This week’s tragedies should serve as timely reminders. As the days grow longer and the weather improves, acknowledging the power of the ocean is a matter of life and death.
There is nothing much more that I can add, except may be an "Amen!"

The Kowtow Administration

The transplanted Chinese word "Kowtow" appears in American media from time to time. Last time the word was prevalent was when William Jefferson Clinton granted Commie China the MFN (most favorite Nation) status in the early 1990's. Even Nancy Pelosi was rightfully voted against it at that time. Now I just saw the word popped up again. An article in the latest "Weekly Standard" by Ethan Gutmann just used the title"The Administration Kowtows" with the byline "Are the Chinese people alone now?"

Here are the relevant points the author made:
On the mainland, the Obama administration is giving the party a free hand exactly when they need it. The party must keep disparate forces--labor groups, Falun Gong, Christians, democracy advocates--isolated from one another. The tool is surveillance--using the Internet, phones, indeed, any electronic device that can track humans. (Many of these technologies originally came from American companies.) Once dissenters are arrested, the party needs to squelch any legal defense. Dissident lawyer Gao Zhisheng, freshly out of detention after severe torture, recently disappeared again.

Organ harvesting--particularly if the liver, kidneys, and corneas are surgically removed while a prisoner is alive--creates a foreign currency stream for the military. For the Chinese state it also solves a problem: Approximately 100,000 incarcerated Falun Gong, and an unspecified number of Eastern Lightning (Christians) will not give up their beliefs. Release is impossible; they are dangerous enemies of the state. In the marriage of the New China's capitalism and the party's unchanging authoritarianism, organ harvesting has become a profitable form of barbarism.

The last time an administration gave such an explicit green light to the Chinese leadership was three weeks after the Tiananmen Square massacre. George H.W. Bush sent National Security Adviser Brent Scowcroft and Deputy Secretary of State Lawrence Eagleburger to Beijing to reassure the Chinese. Again, the message was that human rights and democracy didn't really matter, only business, only partnership. (That Scowcroft had to deliver it in secret, though, is another sign of how far things have deteriorated.) When this became public some months later, many conservatives broke ranks and some liberals joined them in creating a firestorm of criticism for the administration's policy.

And today? Nancy Pelosi cut her teeth on China human rights, but she won't break ranks without sustained pressure. Amnesty International has made some noises about Clinton's comments. To a lesser extent, so have Freedom House, Reporters Without Borders, and Human Rights Watch. But it's not nearly enough. And where are the AFL-CIO, the academy, and the sweatshop coalitions?

And his final point was a question:
Human rights in China. Democracy in China. These are things that the Obama administration wants nothing to do with. Are the Chinese people on their own now?
I guess the answer is clearly affirmative. I applaud the article makes the clear distinction between the commie government and the Chinese people. The Chinese people can see through the American politics and the covert or overt kowtows of the last four U.S. presidents, they know that they are on their own. They are going to vanquish the commie regime on their own sooner or later. One thing that the driveby zombi media never report to the American people is that there are thousands, may be tens or hundreds of thousands of protests around the mainland where unarmed people came up against the fully equipped Peoples Liberation Army daily. Most of the politicians and short-sighted people never comtemplate that the commie regime CAN collapse overnight sooner or later. Even being a septogenarian, I think I can see that happening in my life time!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Day of Tibet

Today at many parts of the world has been designated as Day of Tibet or Tibet Day.

This must-read timely news article in WAtoday is written by Matt Wade, Dharamsala explains why:
HALF a century after being forced into exile, the Dalai Lama has cast aside his conciliatory "middle way" approach to China and accused the communist Government of putting his people through "hell on earth".
It's about time, but better late than never!
. . . the Tibetan spiritual leader accused Beijing of "repressive and violent campaigns" that had killed hundreds of thousands of Tibetans and destroyed the region's cultural and natural heritage.

"These 50 years have brought untold suffering and destruction to the land and the people of Tibet," he said.

The Dalai Lama said that over five decades Tibetans had been thrust into such hardship that "they literally experienced hell on earth".
Here are some historical backgrounds and facts on what this is all about according to this article "Fifty Years to this day: Paradise lost"
  • On October 7, 1950, 40,000 troops of the People's Liberation Army led by Lui Bocheng, the one-eyed general and his political commissar Deng Xiaoping crossed the Yangtze river, and smashed the weak Tibetan defenses.
  • Less than a year later in Beijing, some Tibetan delegates signed a '17-Point Agreement for the Peaceful Liberation of Tibet' (the Dalai Lama later asserted that it was done 'under duress').
  • the Chinese government promised that the status of the Dalai Lama will remain unchanged and unwanted reforms will be not be imposed on Tibet. 'The Local Government of Tibet should carry out reforms of its own accord' was the promise. The promises would never be kept.
  • The situation deteriorated further in 1959, during the night of March 17, the young Tibetan leader secretly fled his palace for India.
  • According to the Tibetan government in exile, over 86,000 Tibetans in Central Tibet were killed by the Chinese during this period.
  • The Dalai Lama finally crossed into India on March 31, 1959. He was immediately granted asylum by Nehru's government.
Here's a view of Dalai Lama and his entourage on their way to India in 1959.

The Commie regime will not be there too much longer, Tibetan people will be around forever!

Monday, March 09, 2009

The rising of Commie terriorists

I don't know about you, but I find this following news very, very depressing:

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States urged China to observe international maritime rules on Monday after five Chinese ships harassed an unarmed U.S. Navy ship in international waters in the South China Sea.

"Our ships operate fairly regularly in international waters where these incidents took place. We are going to continue to operate in those international waters and we expect the Chinese to observe international laws around them," White House spokesman Robert Gibbs told a news conference.

As usual there's this misnomer in the reporting: when they say China, it is really indicating that's the Commie government that's holding China hostage with their People's Liberation Army that has no hesitation on oppressing and killing Chinese people.

The other important point to be made, it should also served as a clear warning to the new administration which Americans unfortunately voted last November when they geared up to cut our defense budget in favor of give the money to community organizers: the Commies and the terrorists know only forces. If you are willingly to cut your own defense power like the power that be in Washington D.C. are planning to do, the Commies and the terrorists are only more than happy to wipe all of you out from the face of the earth!

First they ran our economy to the ground, then they try to cut our defense, all you well-meaning Americans who voted for "hope and change", now that you have seen what really is changing. Are you happy now?

Sunday, March 08, 2009

Second Sunday in Lent


Adoro te devote
Adoro te devote, latens Deitas,
quae sub his figuris vere latitas:
tibi se cor meum totum subiicit,
quia te contemplans totum deficit.

Visus, tactus, gustus in te fallitur,
sed auditu solo tuto creditur;
credo quidquid dixit Dei Filius:
nil hoc verbo Veritatis verius.

In cruce latebat sola Deitas,
at hic latet simul et humanitas;
ambo tamen credens atque confitens,
peto quod petivit latro paenitens.

Plagas, sicut Thomas, non intueor;
Deum tamen meum te confiteor;
fac me tibi semper magis credere,
in te spem habere, te diligere.

O memoriale mortis Domini! panis vivus,
vitam praestans homini!
praesta meae menti de te vivere
et te illi semper dulce sapere.

Pie pellicane, Iesu Domine,
me immundum munda tuo sanguine;
cuius una stilla salvum facere totum
mundum quit ab omni scelere.

Iesu, quem velatum nunc aspicio,
oro fiat illud quod tam sitio;
ut te revelata cernens facie,
visu sim beatus tuae gloriae.
Amen.

Translation:
Hidden God, devoutly I adore Thee,
truly present underneath these veils:
all my heart subdues itself before Thee,
since it all before Thee faints and fails.

Not to sight, or taste, or touch be
credit hearing only do we trust secure;
I believe, for God the Son has said it-
Word of truth that ever shall endure.

On the cross was veiled Thy Godhead's splendor,
here Thy manhood lies hidden too;
unto both alike my faith I render,
and, as sued the contrite thief, I sue.

Though I look not on Thy wounds with Thomas,
Thee, my Lord, and Thee, my God, I call:
make me more and more believe Thy promise,
hope in Thee, and love Thee over all.

O memorial of my Savior dying,
Living Bread, that gives life to man;
make my soul, its life from Thee supplying,
taste Thy sweetness, as on earth it can.

Deign, O Jesus, Pelican of heaven,
me, a sinner, in Thy Blood to lave,
to a single drop of which is given
all the world from all its sin to save.

Contemplating, Lord, Thy hidden presence,
grant me what I thirst for and implore,
in the revelation of Thy essence to behold
Thy glory evermore.
Amen.


Hat-tip: Divona91.

Saturday, March 07, 2009

1000 days at sea

I came to learn about this rather fascinating story late -- 683 days late as a matter of fact. But it is still better late than never.

It started when I come across this Youtube video called "Dangers at Sea"



in which I was duly impressed by the vast knowledge and enthusiasm shown by the gentleman, Reid Stowe, especially when I heard him saying that "giant rogue waves somewhere in the world . . ." I am naturally interested! I was also intrigued by the young lady stands attentatively next to Stowe did not say a word in this video. My curiosity led me to their well organized site: 1000 days at sea. Their 70 ft gaff-rigged schooner Anne was launched on Saturday, April 21st, 2007 at 3 pm for a 1000 day, non-stop sea voyage.
Schooner Anne, named after Reid Stowe's Mom

So today is actually the 684th day of their voyage. They have a well maintained blog, anyone interested will be able to followed their voyage with day to day details. For me may be there are two events are particularly of interest: the young lady, Soanya, had to leave the boat after 305 days (she gives birth to a son on Day 452), and Reid encountered a freaque wave recently at Day 658, on February 8, 2009.

Here's the detail of the freaque wave encounter according to Reid's blog entry:
Yesterday was also marked by an unforgettable experience. We rode out a terrifying storm with some difficulty: We were smashed hard and knocked down by a rogue wave. I was in the galley cooking and thrown against the wall as we went over. A deluge of cold water poured over me. There was a huge unforgettable noise of the crash of the wave and everything falling. I was stunned but the cold water woke me up. I remained wet the rest of the day while I worked to secure the boat.

I heard a huge noise outside above the noise of jet planes revving their engines and trains with runaway horns. When the mast went down into the water, the staysail filled up with water and when it came up, the boom broke and the staysail burst noisily into shreds. I was hurt, but not broken or cut and I knew I had to shake it off and get to work to make sure that the schooner would stay afloat and to get her moving so she would not wallow broadside to the waves.

As darkness fell we were secure on a good course sailing off the wind under our smallest storm jib at up to 5 knots. I could hardly finish my dinner I was so tired. When I laid down, my adrenalin stopped and the pain came on and kept me awake as I was tossed around in bed. We made it through the night, but I was up often tending to things. Today the storm has lightened up and our future is ahead of us. I will thrive and send back messages of love.
One thing just occurred to me. Every time whenever I heard about a freaque wave, the first thing I always would like to know is how high the wave might be? But in this case, a freaque wave was unmistakably happened. Luckily Reid was o.k., does the height of the wave really that important? Of course not. I guess the important thing is that a freaque wave had happened. How high or how strong is really of no consequences at all!

There are still over 300 days left in this voyage. We sincerely wish Capt. Stowe smooth sailing the rest of the way and God's speed!