Edwin Messenger reflects on being part of the Phoenicians Before Columbus Expedition
Edwin took part in the Phoenicians Before Columbus Expedition in September - October 2019, sailing from Tunisia to Gibraltar.
Dorset man, Edwin Messenger on board Phoenicia, October 2019
What triggered your involvement in the Expedition?
Just by chance I met Philip in the local hostelry. In the course of the conversation he mentioned that he was in the process of mounting a new expedition to prove that the Phoenicians sailed to the Americas before Christopher Columbus. There and then his enthusiasm fired my imagination to go with them. I was privileged to do one of the legs of the expedition from Carthage to Gibraltar.
What was your personal highlight as part of the crew?
Lots of them - hard to say which was tops.
On the helm using the stars to navigate.
Making the first meal for 11 crew of different nationalities - no pressure.
The welcome from people of Tunis and Carthage.
Using the loo! (not sure if this was high or low point)! Sailing along with the dolphins.
When we reached 5 knots with the wind filling the sail.
Creeping into my sleeping bag after a long four hour watch.
Eating Yuri’s food?
The camaraderie of being part of a great crew all brought together with one aim.
How challenging was it to sail Phoenicia? Were there any low points?
It was challenging at times, but you worked as a team in each watch, so there was a lot of camaraderie. I think we all knew it was going to be fairly exciting at times. The only real low point was when the dreaded sea sickness struck.