Friday, April 3, 2009

LAND, and everything that comes with it....

Wow! Well, it's been an eventful first week on dry land, and I think I'm finally getting used to not living in a 19-foot boat. After being alone for 88 days, one of the strangest adjustments has been getting used to the speed at which I need to be processing things mentally to keep a conversation going. It may sound strange, but on the boat I had all the time in the world to formulate my thoughts in great detail and in a very organized, but not exactly lightning-fast, way. After arriving, I couldn't believe how quickly conversations on land would switch from one topic to another, leaving me struggling to keep my brain moving fast enough to keep up. It was an really weird experience, but I'm happy to report that I'm pretty much back to normal now. Hopefully the people on the other side of my conversations agree!

The days this week have been spent, among other things, walking around English and Falmouth Harbours getting my land legs back. I've been surprised at how sore my legs have been all week -- who would have thought that getting back to land would take a bigger toll on my body than the first couple days of all-day rowing? I feel like I just ran 10 miles after not having run in a while - my legs are stiff and creaky and getting moving is a struggle. Luckily, all of the physical and mental adjustments are well worth making in exchange for the countless joys and comforts of being on LAND.

I'm spending today trying to get the boat packed up and in a shipping container ready to head back to the States. All of the pieces are coming together quickly, and I'm hopeful that this can be done today so I can try to catch a flight back home over the weekend. I feel bad that I'm so much looking forward to leaving such a tropical paradise, but I have many more friends back home that I'm looking forward to seeing again. I hope I can keep up with all of the welcoming festivities that await me in Connecticut and Binghamton!

One other thing to note -- over the next several months I'll be accepting invitations to speak to groups of all kinds about my trip and Row for Hope. If you're interested in having me meet with your school, club, church, or other organization, please send an email to my sister Joy, at I'm based in Stamford, CT, but am more than willing to travel as my schedule allows.

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A Challenge to the Rowing Community

Do you row? Have you rowed? Do you know someone who rows? If so, here's a special challenge to you!

Taking inspiration from Paul Ridley's incredible solo row across the Atlantic, Bob Glendening has generously offered to match all new donations to from members of the rowing community. His generosity also stems from his family's devotion to rowing and its personal experience with cancer. The Glendening Boat House at Colgate was given by the family in 2004 in memory of his mother, who lost her battle with cancer in 2000.

So if you row and you want to show your support for a fellow rower who's crossing the Atlantic solo and unsupported, please consider an online donation to

Please be sure to add "Glendening Challenge" when completing the Gift Information section online at



Anonymous said...

Good Morning Paul!

I'm not surpised about getting your 'land legs' back, especially after 88 days of no walking at all. But I'm sure you'll be back to normal in no time.

I can understand how anxious you must be to get back home to familiar people, things and surroundings. You should begin to really feel normal then.

I heard that you may be doing some TV interviews which is great! Hopefully you'll be able to post your interviews on the website so everyone can watch them, or as in my case of being someone who goes to bed early and works, record them so I/we can watch.

To have accomplished what you have at age 25 and still have so many years to do more, I can't imagine everything you will accomplish in the next 25 years! You're so inspiring and an excellent role model for all the next generations following you. You're incredible and I hope I will have the opportunity to meet you and give you a hug!

A Friend of K-Rock

john said...

Hey big guy,

Don't know if anybody has done this yet or not, but I have put a call in to see if we can't get you on WFAN for an interview spot with Francessa! Obviously this would be as much my dream come true as it would yours, haha. Everybody is exceedingly proud of you! Debbie (Debsaag) and John Saager have been hilarious with their questions.

Anonymous said...

Go see a massage therapist, you earned it :-)

It sounds like you're handling the readjustment great. No surprise.....

We can't wait to see you at home!


p.s. did you chat with your dad about the 19th?

Wild Bill said...


I hope you have left your "bucket and chuck it" routine when you stepped away from LIV.
I'd hate to think of you walking around the harbor on the beautiful tropic island with a bucket in your hand, at the ready. {LMAO}
Civilization does have SOME perks.

Congrats on such a HUGE achievement, Paul !!

Anonymous said...

I too just found out about this!!! So sad I didn't get to follow you as it happened, but I just spent the last 2 hours reading entries to your blog. I am not ashamed to say I cried tears of joy when reading about your arrival. What an amazing person and story. Your mom would be so proud! Off to donate!

Anonymous said...

time to contimplate life with someone else instead of with the stars....see yas soon


Anonymous said...

hi Paul
I am so sorry that your mother died.


Anonymous said...

hi Paul
I am so sorry that your mother had
skin cancer


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