This remarkable tale, transcribed from James’ original hand-written record, is in diary format, suggesting that some notes at least were written ‘live’. Quite how he managed to have the presence of mind and the physical ability to do this in the appalling conditions in which he found himself seems extraordinary, but it is thought he may have used a pencil; his record book, which still survives in excellent condition, appears to have pencilled words over-written with an ink pen, presumably upon his safe return to dry land. Perhaps he wrote up most of the account while staying for a few days in Plymouth.