Sailing around the World, ( presently at sea between Vanuatu and Mackay, Australia,)

A Lady
Stephen Hyde
Tue 20 Jul 2010 13:23
TUESDAY   20th July   2010      Night 5
00.00hrs   The wind was still holding up nicely, even though the weather forcasters suggested it would get very light
perhaps as low as 3 / 4 knots.......  thats non existant for us.  and we are so determined to do this leg without using the engine.
00.30hrs  The wind eventually went very slack, as predicted, down to 7 knots, so we sailed just with the blue spinniker on its own
and made 2.5 / 3 knots over ground, ( current against us )
At this stage,  
Distance travelled...........................804 miles
Distance to the Great barrier Reef....189 miles
06.30hrs, the wind had increased to 10 knots and we were making 5.10 knots, again, just with the spinniker
It was another beautifull starrey night, and the half moon vanished at about midnight,  a beautifull sailing night.
We had a real heavy dew during the night, it looked as if someone had turned a hose on the boat for the night, and it was also very chilly to boot.
09.00hrs  RADIO  CALL , The radio call today was conducted by " Tucanon " a U.K.  catamaran , and the master of communications for today was none other than the lovely " Bubbley Bev ",,,
Anyway, Crazy Horse and Ocean Jasper are still well ahead of us, but their advantage is reduced to about 38 miles, we may yet have to
rely on our handicap.  then Kallioie was after passing us , but they used their engine, and again they are also giving us time.
It seems most of the fleet motored at some stage during the night , and the penelties for motoring are draconian.
10.30 more blinking holes in the spinniker, there has to be a gremlin up there on the mast and whats more we need to find it before it claims
another spinniker,   3 good size holes, so we took down the chute and repaired it once more, and rehoisted it after 35 minutes,
Scotty took a trip up the mast and taped up anything that looked sharp in an effort to stop the chute getting damaged.
Skipper lost a few pounds winding him up the mast,  thats the excercise for a month !
12.00hrs   and all is well,
Distance travelled...................................846 n miles
Distance to the Barrier Reef.....................143 n miles,
14.00hrs, the wind had gone very light again as predicted by thre forecastors.
18 oohrs the wind had increased again and we had some great sailing in beautifull flat seas and blue clear skies,
Now we had 18  /  20 knots of wind, and with the spinniker and mainsail, we were doing 8  /  9  knots.
19 00hrs, As it got dark, well nearly dark, cause the 1/2 moon was keeping the whole place bright,  we got invaded by red footed " Boobies"
4 landed and took up residency on the top of the mast and effected our wind instruments severly, beggers, and nothing would move them,
we tried using the fog horn on them, and they just thought we were playing games with them . ahhhhhhh 
then we had another one or two on the crosstrees, and another on the life rails , just by the cockpit,
How he managed to stay there and balance himself was a sight to see. like he was onle a couple of feet from us,
The mast was like a " Boobie Tree " and of course we had all our Nav. lights on for good measure, they must have thought that the lights
outlined a Boobie runway.
20.30hrs,  Aileen served up a delicious stuffed roast chicken dinner in the " Starlight Restaurant", with roast potatoes, carrots, peas,
bread sauce, and crispy strips of bacon,,,   yum yum , the ships reputation lives on,,  especially for the 3 fat ducks.
Later , Skipper and Scotty took down the spinniker, and rolled out the Yankee ( Headsail ) and not a minute too soon,
no sooner than we had it all stowed away, the wind increased to 27 knots,   boy were we glad we made that call,
just instinct.....
Another moonlit nightas we bomb along towards the Great Barrier Reef, and we are all excited about this destination...
Thats it for now, 
Signed :-    Stephen Hyde    ( Skipper )