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D-44 Big Swim - Wrap UpSherrin and Stephen wish to thank everyone for their support
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승인 2010.08.01  14:46:46
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D-44

Sherrin writes: "Yesterday I swam from Sarabong to Samyang with Mr Kim Cheon Tae and his team of lifeguards - The Jeju Big Swim is finally over. What an adventure! I missed the 50 kms section between Chagwido and Jeju City - but that's OK. Steve was able to go all the way around. He is the first person ever to kayak around Jeju! Thankyou to all our supporters and the many, many people who helped us on our way. We will soon move on to the next phase of the project - creating and implementing awareness programmes we can take out into the community. And we have to plan next year's Jeju Big Swim."





D-35
Steve and I have made it to Chagwido, three quarters of the way around Jeju. We are both back at school now and we're finding that it's almost impossible to keep up a level of fitness that allows me to swim 10 or more kilometers a day on the weekends. A nasty infection in my foot (right where my fin rubs!) and the vagaries of weather haven't helped either.

So, this Saturday, Steve will sea kayak from Chagwido to Kwakji Beach, then on Sunday he will kayak from Kwakji to Iho Beach. This 35 kilometer stretch of water is quite tricky as it's where the tides meet - and I'm no longer in peak condition to swim it.

Having played catch-up in the kayak, the following Saturday, on the 11th of September, I will meet Steve and I'll swim together with several Jeju lifeguards and swimming instructors, from Iho Beach to Tapdong.

On Sunday the 12th, we'll do the same from Sarabong to Samyang.

It's a little disappointing that I didn't get to make it all the way around - we simply ran out of time. But we love that Jeju people are going to join us on this last 15 kilometer leg of The Jeju Big Swim.

I'll send updates as things progress and let people know here details about a music concert at Samyang Beach planned for Sunday September 12th. It's been an amazing adventure and we hope everyone will come and help celebrate finishing The Jeju Big Swim.


D-28


Friday. Aug. 27. Sherrin reports: "Steve had teaching commitments he couldn't get out of. We have about six more days of swimming to finish. We have to swim on weekends. Tomorrow we were going to swim from Chagwi-do to Hyeopje beach, then Sunday Hyeopje beach to Kwakji beach. But [volunteer] Sung Mi spoke with the Marine Police. They say we cannot swim tomorrow because forecast is heavy rains and big seas."


D-25

Today was a rest day


D-24


We started from Seorim Suwonji at 7 a.m. and we arrived at 9:30 a.m. at Sindo, just before the tide turned. We had to wait at Seorim Suwonji until 3:30 until the tide would turn again. So we met my friend Eugene who took us to visit a nearby fish farm that is the model for the future. This fish farm uses a closed system to filter the water so it can be recycled. This is a completely different system of aquaculture. Throughout the swim we’ve been swimming past fish farms and seeing (and smelling) firsthand the dirty waste water the farms pump into the sea. Finally we set out on a strong swim and made it to Chugwedo about 5:30 p.m. a 13 kilometer swim.

D-22

Saturday 21 of August
We left the Pacific Rim Peace Park at 12 midday. It was very hard swimming and very tricky currents and we arrived at Seorim Suwonji at 5:30 p.m. We had an enormous fight. It took all day Sunday to sort everything out. (Well this is an enormous project. You can’t expect it all to be smooth sailing).
D-21


"We left Hwasung Beach at 12 p.m. and ended up near Sangmo peace park around 4 p.m. I swam around those huge cliffs there and the sea was really rough and scary for both of us. The sea kept pushing us toward the cliff face. Steve did the best he could in the kayak but it was every man for himself. We made it around the corner but I was rattled and had had enough."

"At one point at the cliffs we swam right by all the tourist boats and even the yellow submarine."

"We stopped for the day and went to a restaurant nearby for miyuk soup. The owner of the restaurant let us store all our gear there tonight. So that was nice of her. Steve will be camping here and we'll head out to find a minbak."


D-20

Editor’s note: The following is a brief telephone dispatch from Sherrin after her daily swim on Aug. 19. We’ll be updating our website daily with her reports and photos from the field.

"We got to Hwasung in just 3 hours. That's 10 kilometers. I don't know why it was so quick, something about the current and tide, but it was whipping. It could be that one of our volunteers -- Eugene's wife Petya -- cooked me an amazing breakfast that morning."
"I got to ditch my wetsuit for the first time. The weather was good and the water warm. It was really comfortable and helped with the chaffing on my neck and arm. I have to say, though, that I felt like I was swimming naked for the first while!"


D-18

"We went from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. a 15 kilometer swim, so it was a really long day. It's ironic that the water around Gangjeong, where they want to build the naval base, is some of the cleanest water I've seen on the swim thus far. All the water has been really dirty except there."

"When I got out of the water, I rang the Hyatt hotel in Seogwipo and asked the manager if he'd like to contribute to the swim by offering our team two complimentary rooms for two nights. He called me back saying he was sorry that he only had one room available, but when I arrived in the lobby to pick up the key -- still in my wetsuit and covered in sand -- and went up to the room, I found it was a huge suite on the top floor -- like the penthouse!"

"It really blew our minds.... and the team and I ran around screaming our heads off, we were so excited. The view from the huge balcony overlooks the pool and ocean, and there were two baths, lots of fluffy towels, a complimentary bottle of red wine from the manager. It was so nice to be pampered after such a long swim. I invited some of the volunteers who've been helping us to stay with us at the hotel, so there were like six of us up talking until around 3 a.m. enjoying the wine and the view from the balcony.

Sherrin says she hadn't been feeling very well during Tuesday's swim so today (D-19) is a rest day. She left a note for the manager this morning -- they never met because he was called away to Seoul -- saying that she felt like she had "died and gone to heaven" staying there and that she was very grateful.

She says they're "way more than half way" through the swim and that they expect the next bit to be a lot more difficult.


D-17


"We made it to Seogwipo at around 2 p.m. today. Started at 8:15 a.m. and covered more than 11 kilometers. The first half of the swim was really easy, but the especially the last two hours were really hard. Maybe it was the tide or current, I don't know."

"The police escort was really good. They followed us right up to the port [and the end of the day's swim]."

Tomorrow Sherrin expects to swim 13 kilometers, landing at Jungmun. But the going gets rough they have an alternate finished ground. She hopes they'll be able to land right on the beach tomorrow -- rather than the dangerous rocky landings they've had to make in rough seas previously.


D-16

"Only 7 kilometers today from Namwon to Wimi. Sea is very cold and sloppy. Hard swimming. The Marine Police/Coast Guard have been fantastic. Very very helpful and cooperative and we feel very reassured having them nearby. The water temperature is only 20 degress. That’s the cold water stirred up by the cyclone. It was churned up from the deep water. And it has been very interesting because that cold water is the only water that smells as it should be. It smells like salt water. It is the only water that doesn’t smell like sewage, dead rotting fish or fuel. We are going to try to make Seogwipo tomorrow. I will be wearing my haenyeo suit so it’ll be warmer."

D-15


We started from Sin Heung about 9 a.m. and made it to Namwon by the time the tide turned at 1 p.m.

It was quite rough out there and I was very nervous along this part of the coast with such big tides.

But after doing 6 kilometers today I am much more confident. Will start tomorrow at 7 a.m. and swim the whole six-hour tide.


D-14


"Today is Friday the 13th. It's the strongest tides of the month, the weather is foggy/rainy, and I want to get my feet seen to one more time. So we will start tomorrow at 8 a.m. from Sin Heung and swim across the incoming tide that is heading directly on shore. Much better than swimming across the outgoing tide that is heading directly south off shore. Wind is forecast to pick up -- hard swimming."

D-13

Another rest day while waiting for better weather.

D-12

Sherrin spent the day waiting for the sea conditions to improve. She took a bus to Sinheung to check on the sea kayak, which was tied up there in advance of the typhoon. It was fine.

D-11 was a rest day for Sherrin. She went to the doctor and received an injection of antibiotics for her feet.


D-10

Start: 8:30 a.m.
Finish: 11:30 a.m. - Sinheung

"We swam about 6 kilometers today. There was so much white water and large swells, we had a hair-raising exit over the rocks. Everything was thrown off the kayak except for the important stuff, which was all tied down.”

“When we got in the water it was easier going that in the last few days. Then over time the swells got larger and I got more and more tired.”

“By 11:30 we locked up the kayak for the day. I went to Seogwipo, and will just keep an eye on the weather. The Marine Police/Coast Guard have issued a storm warning [the season’s first typhoon hit the island today -- Ed.], starting from this afternoon. No boats are allowed to leave port and we won’t be swimming. So it could be a couple of days before we can start again.”

Sherrin has had ups and downs in the last few days. Asked if last Thursday’s rest day helped, she replied that she’s feeling stronger than a week ago. It turns out that the chaffing on her neck that she mentioned on D-6 turned out not to be caused by her wet suit but rather a gold chain.

She’ll be seeing a doctor tomorrow, D-11, to get some antibiotics for her feet. She’ll be resting in Seogwipo until the weather breaks.


D-9

We left Pysoun beach this morning at 8:45 and it was like swimming in a front loading washing machine. So we had to bail out after three and a half kilometers. We were really struggling to cover any ground. The sea was so rough and the currents and the tides are pretty tricky here. And we weren’t making any progress in the rough seas. We had to find a landing place so we just kind of surfed in between these rocks in to this sort of rock pool. The white water was crashing between these rocks and Steve had to surf the white water to get into this little pool. In the morning we were very lucky we had Eugene, his wife Petya, their daughter Sara and Happy, the dog. So, they actually came and sent us off. But at the end when we bailed out we gave them a call and they pick us up. Thank you to Eugene, they were a big help today.
So tomorrow we are going to try and swim off the slack water. This area is a little bit tricky but we only have to get passed this area which is about 2 or 3 kilometer it should be okay on the other side. It’s just the tides and the currents here are a little bit tricky. I was pretty disgusted with the rubbage that was left on the beaches. It looked like a garbage dump. Walking around town 6:30 this morning it looked like a garbage dump.


D-8

We left Okpyeon 7:30 a.m.
Finished right at 2 p.m. before the tide change.
It was 11 km.

It was hard swimming but not as dangerous as yesterday. We made it to Pysoun beach and the water was really, really, really dirty. I was literally sailing through garbage. We are very happy that the coast guards are hovering in the distance. They are following us, but they are not coming to close; they are keeping an eye on us. Steve’s sea kayaking skills are amazing! Quite a few times in the last few days he has needed to surf through the white water. It was a hard swim and there were big swells, a confused seas and I was swimming in slop again.


D-7

Much needed rest. I actually felt I had been run over by a truck. So today is day six and Tracie picked us up at five a.m. and we got to Sungsan Iclulbong and we were in the water at 6:35. It was a very difficult launch and it was a very, very difficult swim. So when we swam up to the point we had to avoid lots and lots of white water and then we swam around sculpche coge. The wake was so high that we kind of got scared and we found a place to come in. we had to go through the white water and it was really scary. So we got in and we calmed our nerves and had something to eat and talked about it. After 30 minutes then we got back out and it was a little bit calmer, but it was still pretty tough. Then we swam to Onpyoung and Steve literally surfed into the harbor on the sea kayak. It was all white water breaking in front of the entrance to the little harbor, but we got in there and yeah, it was a tough, tough swim. The wind is not blowing in the right direction to help us. I swam for six hours. Exciting swim indeed.


D-5

Start: 6:30 a.m. - Continued from yesterday, swam for 45 minutes
Start: 7:30 a.m. - Songsan Ilchulbong
Finish: Around 1 p.m.

"Today we had a police escort during my swim through the busy Songsan harbor. It was so exciting to be in the middle of everything -- right in the middle of a shipping lane."

"The police were great. They were on the radio and using binoculars to make sure we were safe. At one point I was swimming along with the police escort, a large fishing boat and both Woodo ferries, each coming from the opposite direction."

"It was a tough swim around Songsan Iljubong, though. There seemed to be a reverse current or something."

Tomorrow, D-6, Sherrin and her team will be taking a day off to recuperate. Sherrin reports feeling strong, but that chaffing around her neck from the wetsuit and "cut up" feet should be attended to, to avoid problems like infections.

She says she's fine when she's in the water -- running on autopilot -- but feels the strain once she's on land.

The next update, D-7, will be available online late Friday.


D-4

Start: 6 a.m. - Pyeongdae
Finish: 10:20 a.m. - Hado Beach


Start: 4:30 p.m. - Hado Beach
Finish: Delayed until D-5

“It was really nice to have a day of clean, beautiful swimming.”

“I had a really excellent swim, but it was quite foggy so we stayed close to shore.”

“The only bad thing that happened today was that I started the afternoon swim too late. By the time I was half way through the afternoon the water had gotten really murky and dark. We saw perhaps 30 dolphins swimming nearby, and I got spooked. But overall it was a good day.”

Sherrin’s plan is to return on D-5 to the spot she left the water -- about 1 kilometer from her originally planned finish for D-4. Thursday will be a rest day and she expects to be stronger for Friday.


D-3

Start: 6:30 a.m. – Gimnyeong
Finish 8:45 a.m. – Woljeong

“It was some of the dirtiest water I’ve swam in my life. There was rotting fish, plastic and garbage floating in the water. There was the smell of sewage and diesel.” “We started late and swimming in the deep water with the sun going down was spooky.” Asked about the possibility of sharks and evening feeding, she replied cheerfully: “We don’t mention that word.”


D-2

Floating watermelon. True, there are many things not only on top of the water, but in the water close to the surface. Sherrin constantly is swimming into different pieces of plastic. I thought I was back home in the States, down South. At first I thought it was a watermelon rind. I was able to get my paddle on it and it rotated a full 180 degrees, announcing, yes, I am full watermelon. I couldn't stop. Sherrin had to go. I thought it strange to see this. About 15 minutes later, I saw a rind, thoroughly chewed down.

What else do we see? Plastic bottles of all sorts. Bits of styrofoam nonsense in all sizes. Plastic bags. What are those small plastic funnels???? Paper cups. Candy and chip wrappers. Wood, in all shapes. Two huge crates.

True, there are many things not only on top of the water, but in the water close to the surface. Sherrin constantly is swimming into different pieces of plastic. I thought I was back home in the States, down South. At first I thought it was a watermelon rind. I was able to get my paddle on it and it rotated a full 180 degrees, announcing, yes, I am full watermelon. I couldn't stop. Sherrin had to go. I thought it strange to see this. About 15 minutes later, I saw a rind, thoroughly chewed down. Plastic bottles of all sorts. Bits of styrofoam nonsense in all sizes. Plastic bags. What are those small plastic funnels???? Paper cups. Candy and chip wrappers. Wood, in all shapes. Two huge crates.

What I wish I didn't see. On approach around Dongbok's farthest outcrop there were about 20 people sitting enjoying the "pristine" conditions. I saw a woman go down a bit into the rocks (apparently out of view), closer to my sight, go to the bathroom, use some paper tissue, throw it on the ground, fix her clothes the proper way, and take her child by the hand to the other people.

Coast lines littered. Right next to the beaches, this out of Hamdeok Beach.

On approach around Dongbok's farthest outcrop there were about 20 people sitting enjoying the "pristine" conditions. I saw a woman go down a bit into the rocks (apparently out of view), closer to my sight, go to the bathroom, use some paper tissue, throw it on the ground, fix her clothes the proper way, and take her child by the hand to the other people. Right next to the beaches, this out of Hamdeok Beach.

Finances. Our sponsors' and supporters' moneys have been meticulously recorded. So, too, is every won of spending. I think Sherrin and I are and will continue to be incredibly frugal. We will reveal all of our spending along the way.

One more donation. Thanks to Shara's Garden owner Shin Young for personally meeting us Saturday night after Day 1's swim into Hamdeok and handing us over a donation.

Media boats. Day 2. I wish I could have gotten a picture of the KBS squid boat yesterday.

Natural sites. Two cool things I saw today. First was a flock of sea gulls (maybe 50 in all), in unison approach over us, take a sharp right, and all disperse. Second, flying fish. I've seen them many times before. But it makes me realize the sea is really alive amidst all the garbage.

Our sponsors' and supporters' moneys have been meticulously recorded. So, too, is every won of spending. I think Sherrin and I are and will continue to be incredibly frugal. We will reveal all of our spending along the way. Thanks to Shara's Garden owner Shin Young for personally meeting us Saturday night after Day 1's swim into Hamdeok and handing us over a donation. Day 2. I wish I could have gotten a picture of the KBS squid boat yesterday. Two cool things I saw today. First was a flock of sea gulls (maybe 50 in all), in unison approach over us, take a sharp right, and all disperse. Second, flying fish. I've seen them many times before. But it makes me realize the sea is really alive amidst all the garbage.

Two days down. The first day of the month, Sunday, August 1st, 2010, Sherrin and I completed from Hamdeok Beach to Gimnyeong Beach, a total of 9.5 kilometers. Technically, the kayak and our supplies are stored at the Sailing Club west of the beach. We will start from this spot Monday morning at 6 a.m.

Day 2's numbers: start at 2:10 p.m., finish at 6:30 p.m., averages out being - 9.5 divided by 4.3 repeating equals - more than 2 kms per hour.

The Jeju Big Swim team met with members of our primary sponsor The World Environment and Peace Summer School and the media for pot bing su at Sea Blue restaurant before starting today. I passed. The six hard-boiled eggs and the box of honey coconut biscuits suited me well for breakfast.

Getting out of Hamdeok Beach and around Seoubong, we headed for the tip of Daryeodo off the coast of Bukchon all in about 90 minutes. We were in deep, deep water from this point riding fast, fast current for 2 hours heading toward Dongbok. The water abused us, treating us like the proverbial stepchild with high waves and random choppy swirlings pushing us east.

The first day of the month, Sunday, August 1st, 2010, Sherrin and I completed from Hamdeok Beach to Gimnyeong Beach, a total of 9.5 kilometers. Technically, the kayak and our supplies are stored at the Sailing Club west of the beach. We will start from this spot Monday morning at 6 a.m. start at 2:10 p.m., finish at 6:30 p.m., averages out being - 9.5 divided by 4.3 repeating equals - more than 2 kms per hour. The Jeju Big Swim team met with members of our primary sponsor The World Environment and Peace Summer School and the media for pot bing su at Sea Blue restaurant before starting today. I passed. The six hard-boiled eggs and the box of honey coconut biscuits suited me well for breakfast. Getting out of Hamdeok Beach and around Seoubong, we headed for the tip of Daryeodo off the coast of Bukchon all in about 90 minutes. We were in deep, deep water from this point riding fast, fast current for 2 hours heading toward Dongbok. The water abused us, treating us like the proverbial stepchild with high waves and random choppy swirlings pushing us east.

Sherrin's nerves settled. If she had had a knife, it's possible she would have used it against me, the driver. We got in closer, finally paralleling the shore and easing in to Gimnyeong for the final stretch.

I'll admit we were too far out. Sherrin more or less follows my line. In some ways it's basic geometry, a straight line is always the best route. The next 3 days, we will be hugging the coastline.

The day ended with Sherrin upchucking just before arrival, an incredible galbi dinner with Fred, Hyon-mi, Young-lim, and Sung-mi in the town proper (Ria made a guest appearance.), and an intensive KBS media theatric performance at the Maze Park.

Survive and advance.

If she had had a knife, it's possible she would have used it against me, the driver. We got in closer, finally paralleling the shore and easing in to Gimnyeong for the final stretch. Sherrin more or less follows my line. In some ways it's basic geometry, a straight line is always the best route. The next 3 days, we will be hugging the coastline. The day ended with Sherrin upchucking just before arrival, an incredible galbi dinner with Fred, Hyon-mi, Young-lim, and Sung-mi in the town proper (Ria made a guest appearance.), and an intensive KBS media theatric performance at the Maze Park.


D-1


The Jeju Big Swim Sherrin says: A really huge thank you to all those that came to see us off. The swim went well - stayed in the deeper water so was able to do the 10kms trip in 5 hours. Maze Park are supporting us for the next few days with food and lodging. So far I've eaten well and slept well thanks to them. Am feeling good.

"You should be taking pictures." These were Sherrin's words about 15 minutes after leaving Samyang Beach while members from the Samyang Windsurfing Club circled around us. Easier said than done. I grabbed my Olympus digital camera out of two Ziploc bags, and out of two cases, turned it on, had to clean the memory card (with a dry cloth), took a few shots, was completely disoriented while trying to paddle and put the camera away. My only chance to take pictures will be while Sherrin is grabbing a drink of water from the kayak. Ditto for the cell phone.

Sea of white plastic. Just west of Sinchon, there is a huge patch of white plastic garbage strewn across the black rock shore maybe for a one-fourth of a kilometer stretch. Unsightly. Sherrin was flying past, so no pictures.

Police boat hiding spot. Tucked in close just east of the Samyang power plant is a large police vessel. We saw the large ship once before during a training swim. No activity from the boat this time. During training two months ago, there was an officer on ship with binoculars checking out Sherrin's swimming stroke. I hope he wasn't ogling me.


Transfer from squid boat to kayak. Dangerous. Not smart. Next to the squid boat, the KBS crew offloaded all our gear from the front of the kayak into the boat, and the cameraman jumped in the kayak first and was handed his very pricey HD camera. I have no problem with this, but I'm a big person, and the cameraman even bigger. Fifteen minutes into filming from the kayak, Sherrin stopped for water and commented: "You guys are low in the water." No shit. I was glad for the cameraman's safety and his camera when we got him back on the squid boat.

Leaky hatch. Because of the aforementioned episode, there was a lot of water in the kayak, above the hatch, both in the front and back. There are two holes each front and back to allow for more stability of the kayak, while traveling. It sits lower in the water. After docking at Sea Blue, I opened up both hatches and my towel and change of clothes were waterlogged. I'm going to plug all four holes today, ride the kayak high and dry, and that will prove the hatch covers aren't the best or need to be secured a bit better when opening and closing. Translator Ji-su thought it was funny that I was wiping my face off with a wet towel.

Chai Ba-da at the sendoff. Poet and taewoo extraordinaire wrote and read a poem before we left Samyang on Saturday. Inspirational. We are getting it translated and will post it soon.


Heat index. I knew this voyage was going to be hot, but when I start my first night of camping after docking at Sehwa Beach on Monday night, I am going to be filthy, basting in my own sweat. And, I don't care how much sunscreen I slap on, my arms and legs are going to be covered starting Day 2. The next day's burn is more painful than the current's day discomfort of avoiding the burn.

Dinner with Fred. This is the first time I have met Fred or even seen the man. The owner of Sea Blue - inundated with customers - came over and gave the old man a playful belly rub after dinner, as the Maze Park owner snacked on Hallasan 100 cigarettes. Good people. Only in Korea!

Actros is my Korean kayak. I just want it known I bought the new kayak from a Korean kayak maker, Actros, about 3 months ago, perhaps the only Korean kayak company, and it should have a vested interest in it safely making it around Jeju. This is the first kayak I have been in that contains dry storage space. Actually, that is more worrisome, because I constantly have to worry about water getting in there. Too much is a bad, bad thing. I purposely filled it almost half full during training and could paddle for at least an hour, before draining it on shore.

One-way communication. When Sherrin and I are out moving in the water, she yells at me and I hear. Because she has a cap on and in the water, my yelling is not heard. I'm just talking to myself. Peaceful.

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