A Rescued Sailor's Lost Boat Drifts All The Way To His Mother's Place
BBC presenter Niall Iain MacDonald was battling depression and came up with an idea: He'd row 43 miles across a strait in Scotland to raise awareness about mental health. If you're wondering how someone rowing across a strait in Scotland would raise awareness about mental health, well, maybe it wouldn't, but maybe it could get Niall out of his own slump. With that accomplished, he decided to go further and do something that would attract greater attention. He'd row solo all the way from New York to Scotland, which you might notice is an entire ocean.
After a couple of failed attempts at the 3,400-mile journey, Niall tried again in 2018, and this was his most successful trip by far. After departing New York, he and his rowboat, the Alba, actually made it a quarter of the way across the Atlantic. But then a storm powered itself up, water swamped his cabin, he injured his head, and his radio antenna broke in two. He got out his satellite phone and called for help while he still could. A Dutch cargo ship answered and picked him up.
Niall announced that he was through adventuring. His boat was surely lost forever, as it was a tiny vessel in the middle of the ocean. But then this year, 15 months after he'd ditched it, the Alba washed up ashore ... in Scotland. That's right, the little boat finished the journey without him. Driven by nothing but currents, it had survived thousands of miles and wound up hitting the very neck of Britain it had been bound for. And here's where the weird coincidence comes in: It landed on a beach in South Uist, which happened to be right near Niall's mother's childhood home. If Niall was still looking for a sign to keep going, the Universe was very much serving one up. Or maybe the boat got sick of Niall steering it into storms and decided to take the act solo.
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