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Day 53: Walk The Plank!

We pulled into Kingston, Jamaica at about 6pm. I could see the Pamplona, the ship that will be taking me to Costa Rica, on the other side of the dock, ready to leave at midnight.

But The Caribbean had one last trick up its sleeve for me.

The permission hadn’t come through from the owners.

To cut a long story short, there was no way I was getting on that boat. A flutter of activity between me and Dino (so sorry Dino), keeping him up until 1am on a Sunday night with work in the morning.

Options, options, options. Then, captain Van Der Plaats suggested I stay on board here. We would be in Mexico on Thursday.

I was tired, I was fed up and I had no intention of spending an extra second more than I had to in the Caribbean. I took his offer. Although it would mean me being dumped in Veracruz – a thousand miles from where I wanted to be, I didn’t care. I said yes.

I walked down the gangplank and stepped foot on Jamaican concrete, said I was in Jamaica to my camera, walked back up and that was that.

Only it wasn’t. The shipping agent, Junior, seemed to be making trouble for me, saying that it would be difficult to get off the ship in Mexico. I told him the captain said I could stay on board, I’ve got a British passport and a flight out of New York (which I have no intention of taking!) but he didn’t seem convinced, so I ran away.

I hid in my cabin, dreading that the phone would ring and they’d tell me to get off. It was in this rather distressed mental state that I got an email from Lonely Planet saying they had finally sorted out the funding for the TV show, but for it to go ahead, I have to delete *all* the Odyssey vids off YouTube. Yes, even the one with 230,000 views.

Oh for **** sake.

Which…effectively stuffs up any hope I had of raising a substantial amount of cash for WaterAid by appealing to my would-be thousands of YouTube subscribers once I get to Africa.

I made my bed into a little fort, pulled my knees up to my chest and willed the world to go away and die…

Graham Hughes

Graham Hughes is a British adventurer, presenter, filmmaker and author. He is the only person to have travelled to every country in the world without flying. From 2014 to 2017 he lived off-grid on a private island that he won in a game show, before returning to the UK to campaign for a better future for the generations to come.

This Post Has 6 Comments

  1. Simon Barber

    Sounds like Lonely Planet have failed to grasp the promotional power of You Tube in helping spread the word about the forthcoming series. In fact, what you have accomplished is probably a) the best free advertising they’ve ever had b) more views than you would get from a Lonely Planet tv series.

    The two audiences (web and tv) are not necessarily the same. If you remove the videos after your return leaving only the Odyssey extras, that’s a better compromise. I say politely ask them to reconsider.

  2. Rick Campbell


    Lonely planet made a big mistake! Provide us with contact info and a quick letter saying we want YouTube videos to keep updated… I’ll get all my friends to sign it and send it in.

    Good Luck!

  3. Brian O'Connor

    Dude, I would strongly urge you to resist Lonely Planet’s absurd demands. After all, once your trip is over, you’ve no real guarantee of that TV series, and you will have deprived a potentially huge online audience from keeping up with your adventures for nothing. Plus, the cumulative effect of continuing to post on youtube and maintaining interest could ultimately lead to *far* greater things than this (for now) phantom TV series. Unless Lonely Planet can give you a guarantee that the series will be commisioned, I say fuck ’em, keep doing what you’re doing.

  4. Dino

    No worries about calling us the other night. Sorry I was in a bit of a crap mood. Just catching up with the blogs here. I agree with Si. Gonna get my freak on for the boat search. Not in Manc this weekend but speak soon broseph.

  5. Chris

    I second everything Simon said – ask LP if they’ve thought about the loss of free publicity that removing the You Tube clips would entail, because if they seriously had, they wouldn’t even be talking about it…

  6. Don Merry

    The only reason I am following this adventure of yours is because of Utube. All of this copyright infringement garbage that is stifling Utube is ridiculous. Utube is free advertising!! If not for utube I would have never heard of you or this quest. LP needs to wake the eff up! Tell them that you will continually flog their books and shows in your videos. Talk about missing the boat!

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