Inspiration comes from a lot of places and sometimes the same place twice. Years ago my father told me of an oceanic adventure. There was once a brave man, with a very cool name: Thor Hyeredahl. See? I told ya! In the 50s, Thor had an idea that ancient people had migrated to the Polynesian Islands in the Pacific ocean not from Southeast Asia as was commonly thought, but from South America. It was a preposterous idea at the time. But because, of all things, similarities in the art of both regions, he theorized that they must of migrated from the West coast of the Americas over 5,000 miles on sailing ships. His only solution? Prove it!
So, he gathered a small group of very courageous, possibly crazy Norwegians to turn his theory into fact. After building a giant balsa wood raft called the Kon-Tiki (named after the island God) and overcoming whale sharks, flying fish and no chance of rescue, they made it. It was the adventure of a lifetime, caught in stills and turned into an Academy Award winning film as well as a best selling book.
Decades later another brave man, mimicked Thor’s epic journey with an agenda befit for today’s sensibilities. David de Rothschild, environmentalist and explorer, set out to prove a point. This one was about the Earth itself and how man is wreaking havoc on it’s great oceans. Taking a different Pacific route than the Kon-Tiki, Mr. Rothschild and his daring crew sailed a plastic ship called the Plastiki through what is known as the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. At roughly the size of Texas, a field of plastic bits floats in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. David’s mission was to bring awareness to that patch, by sailing the Plastiki (which was made entirely of nearly 12,000 recycled bottles and materials reused from other sources), through it to investigate.
I followed his trip with fervent attention and bought the book, which he signed for me, once their adventure was finished. It thrilled me to no end during the summer of 2010.
Like Thor, David found a reason to explore that befit his time. Thor looked to the past to solve a mystery, and David looked to the future in the hopes of saving it. I think it was David’s contemporary take on exploration that was so interesting to me. As Marcel Proust said, “The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes.” His "new eyes” found a reason to go again, take one more look and ask new questions. Both of these voyages inspired my journey to keep GLOBALL afloat.