Next year in May 2021, I will be leaving the shores of California, in a solo and unsupported kayak expedition, with the intention to reach Hawaii about 70 days later.
During that ocean crossing, I will be solo, living and paddling on my own the whole way. This being said, the whole adventure would not even come to fruition without the help of all the people that agreed to step-up and take part, one way or another, in the process.
Now, how did I recruit them? 😉
Sometimes they come on their own, letting me know they are just willing to help. That’s amazing, all I have is to say “YES!!”
Most time though, I just identify a need and that someone that could help me with that need. Then I push a little to convince them to help me. Sometimes I am subtle, sometimes not. Lately though, I have grown to being SHAMELESS about it. I just ask. Straight up. No fuss. No problem. Just ask, open heartedly.
“I need to do X, and you have experience doing X, would you be willing to give me a hand and being involved?”
You see, there is always someone that knows better than you, and operating from a “beginner’s mind” point of view, I have never been afraid of asking and tell I was willing to learn from them.
Because of my personality, I have always been able to be blunt about asking for help. It not always easy for everyone, but my philosophy is such that I can only win if I ask: on the one hand, if they can’t help, well….. I haven’t lost anything: “I tried, and I am basically at the same point as before”. On the other hand, if they say “yes”, then I won, and I am better off than I was a minute ago!!
My two cents for this post is:
“Be shameless for your dream, go after it, ask bluntly for help, never give up, pour out a contagious passion and energy about it, and it will definitively happen!”
And after they help, you must thank them, so here I go!
An amazing and huge thank you to those people that have said “yes!” and are currently helping me make it happen!
- Galen at www.seatrek.com for all the advice and favors he allows me to get away with
- Dave organizer of https://outriggersantacruz.org/mbx-home, my paddling buddy and land support for this endeavor
- Lia Ditton: www.rowliarow.com : let’s me pick her brain on just about anything. She is about to make it to Hawaii as I write this!
- Scott Donaldson at www.tasmankayak.com for his amazing advice on his successful expedition, and for being so open to sharing them!
- Antonio de la Rosa of www.antoniodelarosa.net/ for his advice on his recent pacific crossing and always positive attitude!
- Chris of www.newoceanwave.com for all his advice on ocean navigation and for trusting in me 6 years ago for my first ocean crossing
- Roz Savage of www.rozsavage.com for her constant support over the years!
- John of www.riversforchange.org, for his friendship and paddling and trainings tips, including boat repairs
- Zac of www.para-anchor.com/, for sending me 2 sea anchors for my kayak
- Rob and Ginge of www.inukkayaks.co.uk for their knowledge, passion and for agreeing to build my custom made kayak.
- Chris at www.GregNormanEstates.com that was the first to get on board for the boat building funding and is the keystone to making it happen!!
- Beau and Kim at www.StandardProcess.com for their support
- Pat at www.vaikobi.com, who agreed to sponsor me with all the gear for the crossing and always being here to support my endeavors (my first one was to create www.OTW360.com)
- Kenny of www.Epickayaks.com for sponsoring me with the paddles for the crossing!
- Mike at www.thecanvasworks.com, for creating a few custom sitting options for the kayak
- Jim at www.hobie.com : gave me a Hobie Kayak and a mirage drive and a paddle to train on it during 7 months, gave me a Mirage drive to send to England to our boat builder there so he could add it to Valentine
- Ross at www.katadyngroup.com for lending me a back up water maker for the crossing
- Michel of www.searout.fr, who agreed to support me with weather and routing navigation during the crossing
- Tim of www.enduranceptc.com, who agreed to do an Endurance Performance Test to see where I stand on training
- Aenor of www.virtualmedicine.health/aenor-sawyer, who greed support me as a doctor during the crossing
- Jean-Pascal my French hometown buddy who helped me put together my First Aid kit and will be my doctor during the crossing. Love you my JP!
- Chris (yes, another one) for helping me review my first aid kit, and make sure nothing is missing!
- Sean at www.performancepaddlesports.com, who let’s me pick his brain on just about anything paddling wise
- Pierre of www.mental-access.com, who worked on getting me ready mentally and emotionally for the crossing!
- Greg or www.rowphysio.com: let’s me call him anytime of the day and night on questions about physical performance and how I feel
- Marcelo and West (www.Westhansen.com) of the www.explorers.org for their numerous ways to support me.
- James at www.fivepointsfitness.net for his daily conversations at the gym while I train, on strength, flexibility and mobility
- Tatiana of www.OceanRowing.com for helping register for a Guinness World Record
- Doug of www.douglevy.com for his review of my blogpost and his constant support on my ideas
- Kellen at www.KellenKeene.com for believing in me and the story I want to tell in the documentary we will make
- Leah of www.Inflatablefilms.com for her help in navigating the documentary production journey
- Clement of www.travelmap.net for mapping my adventures in 2020 and my crossing in 2021
- Gwenn of www.Bask.org for the mental support and extreme positivism
- Greg of www.sfchronicle.com/ for being so interested and thorough in learning about my endeavor
- Mary of www.oceanvoyagesinstitute.org/ for allowing me to represent their nonprofit during my crossing!
- Johanna of the French consulate www.sanfrancisco.consulfrance.org/-english- of san Francisco for creating a video presenting my project.
- My brother from another mother, Thiago: you are always here, no matter what or when. My American family Roman & Claire. My Canadian family Steve & Karla. My paddling buddies Marc, Wayne, Tevita, Jacob, Leif.
- Last but not least, Ashley my girlfriend and partner in life; My two kids Oliver and Simon, my Mom and Dad, my brothers and sister, their wives/husband and kids, for their constant support, and all the extended family.
If you too want to help me, in one way of another, be careful before offering your help, because I will definitely take you up on it!
So just do it, please contact me at [email protected], and let’s do this together!