This probably wasn't the kind of odyssey Homer had in mind when he first came into the world as a turtle.
There were all those oceans to conquer, other turtles to meet, boundless horizons to explore.
Then he was struck blind. A terrible accident meant he could no longer feed himself, or even guess where he was going.

Airlifted to safety: Homer at the Archelon rescue centre in Athens

So yesterday he embarked his final trip across the sea - on a British Airways flight from Athens to England.
The nine stone loggerhead was airlifted to sanctuary in a remarkable operation to save the endangered species from losing another of its number - perhaps, even literally, to get the stricken creature out of the soup.
Now he could live to be 100. That was the good news. The bad news was that he'd be spending the rest of his days in Newquay.
Last night, Homer - who bears an uncanny resemblance to the Simpsons cartoon character but was actually named after the Greek poet - was preparing to begin a new chapter in his epic life in the care of marine conservationists.

He will join sharks, fish, eels, stingrays and other familiar sea life at the Cornish resort's Blue Reef Aquarium.
Newquay waters are a trifle chilly for loggerheads (and mostly populated by surfers).
So home from now on will be a 5,000 gallon tank in which he is destined to become a star attraction for hundreds of thousands of tourists a year.
Homer's 21st century odyssey began after he was injured off the Greek coast two years ago.
Experts believe he was either caught in a trawler's propeller or deliberately blinded by fishermen.
According to the Greek marine rescue centre that cared for him, fishermen have been known to gouge out turtles' eyes when they become entangled in expensive nets or destroy trawling gear.

Homer was found with a gash on his head, one eye missing and the other 'poked out'.
In different hands he might have become turtle soup. Instead, the 40-year-old reptile was taken to the centre to be cared for.
Staff spent more than a year feeding him with fish and crustaceans on a stick, later encouraging him to smell the food or feel it with his flippers so he could feed himself.
Although close to death at one stage, he gained more than 22lb and made an impressive recovery. But the centre was already crowded with other marine life. And without the power of sight, he could never be returned safely to the sea.
So the Blue Reef Aquarium, which already had links with Greece, agreed to take him on board.
Transporting a three-foot long turtle 1,500 miles across the sea, however, posed the kind of logistical problem that a loggerhead, capable of swimming thousands of miles, does not ordinarily encounter.



Which is why, last night, a British Airways jet with temperature controlled crate in the hold brought him gently into Heathrow before Homer headed west. He will be quarantined in Cornwall prior to beginning a new life in Newquay.
Blue Reef already has two loggerheads, Steve and Squirt, who were blown off course from the Canary Islands and washed up in Britain. But Homer is set to drift into retirement long after they are returned to their natural habitat.
'It's the first time we've had a turtle sent to us this way,' said deputy manager Christine Comery.
'Normally we look after them for a time and send them back to where they came from. But because he can't fend for himself he wouldn't survive.'
Homer is a particularly appropriate name because the ancient Greek writer, believed to have lived around the time of the Trojan war, is thought by some to have been blind.
Loggerheads Caretta caretta) get their name from the disproportionate size of their heads compared to their bodies.
In the wilds of the ocean, they can spend years swimming in warm currents that take them around the globe. But only rarely to Newquay.

From Athens to Newquay - rescued blind turtle's final journey to help save species | Mail Online