Here’s your challenge: Spend 8 days and nights on the pontoon of a capsized catamaran with two of your buddies in the middle the sea 180 miles from land.
You have nothing to eat except for two bags of chips and a package of crackers, both of which taste like gasoline. Luckily, you have some fresh, potable water, but the supply is extremely limited and the few sips you take from time to time do little to slake your maddening thirst. Your skin fries under the intense rays of an unrelenting sun and there isn’t a sliver of shade to provide even a moment of relief. Add to all that debilitating hallucinations of rescuers who aren’t really there. Oh, and the blacktip sharks circling beneath your capsized boat? Those are very real.
The scenario above isn’t the premise of a new reality television show. According to an AP report, this is what happened to Tressel Hawkins, Curtis Hall and James Phillips, three buddies from Texas who set out for an overnight fishing trip in the Gulf of Mexico on August 21 and weren’t seen or heard from again until a private sportfishing boat miraculously happened past them on August 29, one day after the Coast Guard called off its search for the men.
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