We are currently zooming across the central Atlantic. After a 5.30 am peel
to the much repaired A2 due to a drop in the wind overnight, and a swift
gybe, we are back up to speed again. Though we aren't surfing nearly as
much, we are still maintaining a reasonable boat speed.
As we reach the halfway marker (in time at least), the days are flying by.
True trade wind weather, with hot sunshine and steady breeze allowing us to
forge our way westward. The nights, however, have been hard work, especially
last night. Thick cloud cover, and the lack of moon until 3am, robbed us of
all visual clues to steer by. This has left us long hours staring at the
true wind angle on the mast, trying to make it say the right number.
However, as i write this, Xtra Straerk - the XP44 - are within visual range,
overhauling us to windward. Their symmetric kite affording them deeper
running angles to boot. With this in mind we know that this is no time to
take our eyes off the ball, our foot off the accelerator, or our hands off
the kite sheets.
Aside from the racing, spirits on board remain high. The sweepstakes on when
we will arrive is taped up in a nav, alongside Paul's Christmas card from
his Mum and Dad. We are having so much fun, that the local wildlife is just
dying to join us. Every night we are peppered with suicidal flying fish (and
one squid) which jump aboard. If they don't kill themselves on impact, they
proceed to flap around the deck depositing scales and 'eau d'fish'. We even
found one in the nav upon a morning, after it deflected down the hatch off a
halyard winch. This popularity would be fine, apart from the smell they
bring with them. This reached and all time high yesterday evening,
triggering an all out fish hunt. The culprit turned out to be a 2 day old
specimen, which had wedged itself under the main sheet traveller.
Flying fish, if you are reading this, you are probably better off not
joining us onboard.
Black Sheep Out.