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Friday Round-Up: Take a Leap

January 7th, 2011

Unless you’ve been living in a deep, dark cave… You may have noticed that there is a lot of cool stuff going on out there. So, we thought it was high-time we started rounding up some of our faves each Friday. Every month, we’ll be choosing a theme that fits with the Osprey lifestyle. Since we’ve hit the ground running into 2011, we figured there was no better theme than “taking a leap”. So all month we’ll be highlighting people, organizations that are going for it — leaping, diving and running as fast as they can to live this life . Welcome to the Osprey Friday Round-Up!

Just a few months ago, our good friend Sara Close changed course and not in a small way. She said goodbye to friends and co-workers at Leave No Trace in landlocked Boulder, Colo. and got on a boat. In South Africa. When was the last time you took that kind of leap?

A firm believer that we all live in a little world with big stories to tell, Sara is continually seeking ways to expose the interconnectedness of the individual, the organization, and ultimately, the environment in which both exist. More than just about anything else, Sara believes in the potential for an individual to affect change in the world around them. And that’s exactly why she joined forces with 5Gyres. Their mission: conduct research and communicate about the global impact of plastic pollution in the world’s oceans and employ strategies to eliminate the accumulation of plastic pollution in the 5 subtropical gyres.

From Sara Close:

January 5th. Simon, Sarah, Megan and I are lined up on the starboard side of the boat, seated and slightly gangly-oriented over a load of sheets and lines, slack-jawed and staring at the sunset of our lives. Bright hues of magenta and orange reflect like an oil slick and run toward where we sit on the boat, refracted by the shadows of 100 seabirds fishing for delicacies in the evening light. It’s ocean for as far as we can see.

“You know, it’s funny,” Megan says, “that we’re sitting here staring out at the ocean when it’s all we’re going to see for the next 30 days.”

Insert irony, of the scene 180 degrees behind us – a mix of shipping containers, barges, oilrigs and merchant buildings. The exhaust from smoke stacks lining the harbour rises in to the sky and mingles with the approaching night. Smaller yachts and boats at anchor bob up and down in the harbour of Walvis Bay, Namibia. Slightly pink like alpenglow in the Rockies, dunes of the Kalahari Desert loom with authority behind the city.

Translation: it’s the last sight of land we’ll have for quite some time, and yet none of us can tear ourselves away from looking out over the endless ocean, brilliant sunset, and the impending adventure.

It’s really emotional, and I struggle in the moment to find words to adequately capture what I’m feeling… why I’m so excited to go see something so tragic… why I’d like to live on a boat for a month when I’m claustrophobic… and etcetera on with the how’s and why’s and I wonders. So far, I’ve just got Polaroid moments of feeling coming through – inspriation, creativity, exhilaration, discovery, humanity, cleansing, collecting.

Read more…

In writing this post, I learned that changing course quickly and drastically in sailing terms is a “jibe”. So, we’d like to give Ms. Close a resounding “Jibe-Ho!” from the Osprey family. Happy Friday! Get out there and take a leap!

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