Unless disaster strikes we will be in Martinique around noon local time tomorrow (Friday 30th).
At 14.30 (ship's time, Thurs) we celebrated less than 100miles to go with the remains of the chocolate which Ellen managed to save from my cooking experiments.
At 14.45 (ship's time, Thurs) we switched from our small scale "North Atlantic Western Part" chart to our larger scale "Caribbean Sea" chart. Martinique has expanded from the size of a cherry stone to the size of a cherry tomato. The small scale chart covers Brazil to Greenland and we've been painstakingly plotting our progress across the Atlantic on it. It also bares witness to a couple of meals which launched themselves from the galley onto the chart table. Early tomorrow we'll switch to our "Southern Martinique" chart.
Celebrations aside it's been a hard fought last 120 miles. It's as though some malevolent force is testing our resolve. "Let's drop the wind and see what they do. Ha Ha! Great! They've just put up full sail. Let's send in a squall and make it quick so they don't have time to react. They got through that one now let's change wind direction. They've gybed so let's change it back! What? Full sails again? Send in another squall! Cooking? How about some nasty cross-swell to send the boat rolling ..." and so on. I decided the only way to deal with the worst of the weather was to welcome the approach of the black rain bearing squall clouds as the chance for a good shower. Although I think even for me two showers a day is probably adequate - four is excessive and with six I'm in danger of dissolving/becoming clean [Ellen's note].
The timing of our landfall is perfect; we're down to our last kitchen roll. Conditions on Kika would have started to deteriorate rapidly without this essential piece of equipment.
Position at 16.20 UTC: 14deg 19'N, 59deg 04'W
Daily distance run: 98nm; cumulative distance: 2860:
Engine hours: 0
Distance to go: ~ 108nm
Conditions: N/NE/E/SE 6-35 knots,
moderate/rough sea, 1011 millibars