Sleep. Glorious Sleep

Thu 27 Mar 2008 20:36
50,29.62N 001,46.41W



For those who do not know what life is like onboard a Challenge 67, I thought I would explain how it is that we sleep – or mostly not.


First of all, the sleeping arrangements.  Unlike the Captain and Mate with a cabin each, those of us in the cheap berths make do with three to a cabin.  The beds are somewhat like hammocks but more solid and stacked three high.  This means that each occupant has less room than a coffin, and probably less comfortable as well.  It is difficult to turn over without knocking the occupant above – sitting up is impossible.


Next is when you are allowed to sleep.  This yacht operates a 4 hours on 4 hours off system – which in theory means 4 hours continuous sleep at a time.  However your sleep period includes the time taken to dress, undress, wash, sort out your clothing and eat meals - so about three hours is nearer the mark,


Assuming you have made it into your pit, the next challenge is getting to sleep.  In between the gentleman three inches above your nose tossing and turning, the gentleman below snoring and the banging and crashing of doors as the on watch go to the loo, you have to contend with the crashing of waves along the hull, the banging of the rigging as the sails are changed on deck and the drone of the generator.


Ah but the bliss of getting into dry clothes, snuggling deep into your sleeping bag and feeling life return to your hands and feet almost makes up for it…..Almost.


Peter Baker