This is an unpretentious personal account by Jasper Winn of his solo sea kayaking journey around Ireland .
Spurred on sometimes by the goal of completing the trip, and sometimes by the goad of realizing how dumb he'd appear if he gave up after proudly announcing to someone in a pub what he aimed to do, Winn pushed his way all around the Irish coast in one of the wettest summers in history.
I enjoyed Winn's stream-of-consciousness delivery. It's exactly how things pass through your mind on a long solo trip: the anxieties about landing, the possibility of running into something alive and big with teeth, a lusting for food, or company, or uncertainty about what that flashing light means. It's also how things materialize, like flotsam on a beach, sorted by size and type by the waves, or how people appear out of the mist when you think yourself alone, or take you into their home and feed you when you're trying to pin down your tent in a gale.
He sets out to complete his trip planning to find guitars to play and friends to meet in the local pubs, a roof over his head when he gets tired of being storm-bound in a tent and the possibility of a hot shower and a restaurant meal when fancy takes. He's not out to break a record set by anyone else, or win any race, instead it's a personal challenge.
If like me you enjoy sea kayaking, or think you might, and you'd like to know what it takes to launch from your home town to take what comes day by day, or if you'd simply like to know more about Ireland, then you'll find Jasper Winn's book a pleasing read.
Published by "A Sort of Books" in UK