Off to Battle
James Brook, Australian
Leading deckhand, M/Y Steve Irwin
It's hard to believe we are actually off on campaign at last. For myself and the other crew who have been working on the ship for the past nine months, it has been a long road to this point. As the crowds of Freemantle cheered us off I felt as if we were a citizens army, raised from the local population to see off an invading enemy. And in a way that is exactly what we are. Our funding is from the people of the world, our crew from many nationalities, and we are going to war. The battle to fight against those who turn our planet to waste and emptiness. A planet which once supported in harmony so many different species of plants and animals.
After leaving port on Monday morning, we anchored and spent the day and night preparing the ship for the Southern Ocean. Two of us dived the hull to inspect it, checking crustacean growth on the prop, and the deck crew worked till midnight tying down boats, tools, and the various loose items all over the ship.
I felt sorry for the sea sick crew who had to don their immersion suits during the drill. For some of us it is the first time we have been filmed by the Animal Planet camera crew, and it still feels unusual to have your everyday life recorded.
Huge thanks to the thousands of people who have supported us with money, food, time and help. The crew is very determined. We know this is a big chance to really stop the illegal whaling this year, and hopefully set an example to the people of the world that everywhere we have to fight to protect our planet and its creatures from human caused extinction. Cheers and rock on!