Saturday, December 17, 2005

Ellen's sealegs arrive

The engine is a marvellous thing but undoubtedly smelly, noisy, hot and greedy! For all these reasons, we have tried to strictly limit its use and it's been very peaceful on board. Early yesterday morning, although the wind was light and our speed sometimes negligible, we soldiered on under sail until the wind picked up later in the day, hence the lowest daily run. We have been sailing along nicely all day, mindful of the rhumb line to Martinique, and checking George the wind-vane for any deviation. He can slyly steer us in the wrong direction for hours if the wind changes.

Last night was a much better watch for me, not least because it began with a delicious pasta dish courtesy of Skipper Nick in which he'd had the excellent idea of adding some Pedro to the sauce (Pedro is our spanish cured ham complete with his trotter). Fortunately, my stomach seemed amenable to the idea of food for the first time in days, and I haven't stopped since.

Boat time has now been altered to UT-2hours to correspond with our westerly route. As a result, both Nick and I have done watches of 7 hours each throughout the night (I'm yawning as I write!) It is now 0835 UT and we are sailing at 5+k with a NE wind of about 12k.

Position at 14.15 UTC: 15deg 06'N 32deg 10'W.
Daily distance run: ~90nm; cumulative distance: 1285:
Engine hours: 0
Distance to go: ~ 1670nm
Conditions: N 12 knots, slight sea, 1011 millibars

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