Hamish Hooper blogs on a good day at sea and gives some good advice on Christmas gifts…
Today was a good day- except good days don’t matter too much unless it’s the last part of the last day of a leg.
So just like the bad days, you for take it what it is, forget about it and keep sailing as you were- as fast as you possibly can.
Conditions down below have not improved although there was a slight reprieve on deck where it was pretty pleasant. So much so that there has been a lot of ‘airing out’ going on today of damp wet weather kit, sweaty clothes, boots, shoes etc.
Chuny arrived on deck for his watch to find Mike having a real good airing, gave a perplexed frown and in his Spanish accent muttered the word, “marginal”, with an accompanying look as if to say, ‘Is that the right word to use?’
Yep, he hit the nail on the head with that one. Very marginal.
The clouds around here are pretty stunning really. Layers of massive clouds of differing hues of grey – forming, building and unleashing great volumes of rain, wind and power in front of your eyes. But the ones you really have to look out for are the ones sucking huge volumes of air skyward leaving massive areas of windless holes, that can leave you parked up for a long time more than you care to be. There is no shortage of constant cautious eyes looking skyward.
Especially so during the night and first light this morning when all hell broke loose in a deluge of fresh water as we got squeezed between two massive rain clouds, luckily for us it spat us northward and into some welcome westerly winds which we are now in making good progress.
Stu Bannatyne describes it, “A very busy night dealing with rain clouds, 14 long hours without sleep, I can now get a couple of hours in the bunk knowing that all the hard work has paid some dividends for now- or at least until the next sked.”
tI was a stunning night, a moonless sky splattered with glistening patches of familiar stars, interrupted by areas of deep darkness of cloud, the dim red glow of the instruments and a cooling breeze guiding us along at 17 knots in near silence. One of those magical moments you will remember long after this race has run.
Being out here you expect to see Santa and his reindeer; zooming back and forward across the sky.
No sightings yet, but we will keep an eye out. Maybe tonight… Just make sure you kids leave out some cookies and a glass of milk (or beer, as he used to prefer when dropping in on me and my brothers) for him to help him on his way. I always did wonder how he made it back to the North Pole if he drank a glass of beer at every house he visited.
As Trae continues to remind us only one more day of Christmas shopping!
So if you are looking for a last minute Christmas present idea- just look to the horizon (or a photo) and just read what it says across our sails… Perfect..