Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Fearless - A book review

Paddle friend Neville let me borrow the book "Fearless" by Joe Glickman; the story of Freya's solo circumnavigation of Australia in 2009.  Freya was in Newfoundland in 2007 for our spring kayakers Retreat.

A most interesting book not only for the journey but for the look into such an enigmatic person that most serious paddlers know of.

The plot was simple: be the first woman to paddle around Australia and do it in record time, that is, beat the time set by Paul Caffyn.  The following words describe the essence of the trip: challenging seas, long exposed coastlines, long open crossing, crocodiles, sharks, loneliness and an all consuming fixation with time.

On the Freya factor, Glickman does a great job of conveying her incredible mental toughness, grit, skill and supreme confidence.  For all the obstacles that stood in her way her answer was "Vasdaproblum".  Humility apparently is not one of her virtues.

I was inspired and I was saddened.  At one point she stated to Glickman "I'm simply not interested in people anyway."  Funny attitude for someone who is such a great inspiration to so many.  Funny too for someone who appears to seek approval by excelling in everything she gets involved in.

A great read for the adventure and also maybe a bit of introspection of one's own place with family, friends and acquaintances.

As a side note, I'd recommend checking out Google Earth while reading the book for photos of the different stops and coastline she paddled to supplement the 8 pages of pictures in the book.

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