Day 828 [Jan. 7/11 HST] -- Happy Amazing 77th Birthday, Saito-san!

Today's Report
January 7/11 HST

Position:  21°17'N, 157°53'W (Honolulu) 

Remaining distance to Yokohama finish:  13.4%

Minoru Saito turns 77 years old today, on Day 28,125 of his life and Day 828 of his historic eighth solo voyage around the Earth.

There's a party planned for him at the Honolulu Yacht Club, organized by his supporters in Hawaii. While he knows that's where he will be taken this evening he has not been told that there will be a gathering of friends and supporters waiting to fete this important date. His gift from supporters, paid for by donations, arrived just in time and will be handed him. Several birthday messages from the Internet and members of the Saito 8 Support Committee will be read aloud.

While many people do reach the venerable age of 77, not one person in the history of mankind has ever done so on a nearly finished solo circumnavigation.

And while there have been a few detours and interruptions along the way, he has not left his boat despite some immense hardships and punishing physical and mental toil, nor has anyone stepped aboard to assist him while under way. To that extent he has already succeeded in his amazing and seemingly impossible "wrong way" Saito 8 Challenge, as he passes this milestone in a sea-faring life filled with hazards few people ever experience.

So to Saito-san, from his many admirers in Japan, Hawaii, New Zealand, Australia, Tasmania, South Africa, South America, both American coasts (and in between), England, France, Germany, Denmark, Thailand, Canada, Philippines, Singapore, Malaysia, China, the Pacific Islands, several transoceanic cruisers, and throughout the far Internet reaches of the world, together we toast:

"Congratulations, Skipper. Well done!"