Sailing around the World ( presently at sea, between Fiji & Tanna, Vanuatu, South Pacific.)

A Lady
Stephen Hyde
Sun 4 Jul 2010 16:56
SUNDAY  4th JULY   2010     Independance Day
During the starrey night, there was this boat a few miles on our starboard side, and it seemed to be getting closer,
skipper went a few degrees to port so we would not get too close, but they kept comming, so we went another 10degrees
to port, and they still kept comming,
Suddenly, and without any warning, they just shot across our bow, not more than 60mts in front of us.   Bloody hell !
Skipper got on the VHF immidiatly   " This is the yacht A Lady, please identify yourself "
A minute later,  " Hi Stephen, This is Chessy, how are you "  well I'll be damned, that was close in an ocean as big as this,
Its amazing the things that cross your mind in the middle of the night when your at sea, anything from Sea Monsters to Gost ships,
but last night, I thought , how are Marrion and Ingrid getting on in Germany, When I see the stars dancing in the sky and
in particular my referance to the southern cross many months ago, I think of how Ingrid corrected me on where the stars could be seen from.!
Actually, Ingrid says they have a special pair of binoculars that identifies all the different stars.and how far away they are from us.
facinating stuff,  We must get hold of one of these things.
As we said before , its great to get emails, this week, we had traffic from, Aileens sisters, Ann & Michelle, ( michelle is usually great for the constant
contact.)  Barbara Ahern,  Brendan O'Conell, Bro. Alfred, Sarah , Niall O Rielly, Alan Mc Millan, Kevin Dwyer, Veronica, Elenor Cudmore,
and our dear departed Margaret How. and others...............
06.00hrs   It was a pretty uneventfull night , apart from chessy, The wind has dropped right down to 14 / 18 knots, but a little more aft of beam,
just lovely night sailing conditions,
By this stage, we had nearly caught up and passed the most of the fleet.
Aileen is still fairly shook, and having spent most of the night asleep in the cockpit, decided to head for the scratcher.
09.00hrs  Skipper and Scotty decided to fly the " Kite " .  To set up all the sheets, guys, up hauls , down hauls, spinniker pole ,
not to mind the kite itself takes about 20 mins, and then 5 / 10 mins, to get the thing up and working.
But once all that is done, its a great sail, and more than anything else, keeps the boat so stable,
We discussed the cost of it later on in the day, There's no doubt that it is a very expensive bit of kit. and you really have to practice
putting it up and taking it down ..  Good for the figure......
12.00hrs  The daily roll call on the SSB for the fleet..
We can hear the incomming traffic fine, but our outbound signal is so poor that we can only send 10 miles max.
Anyway, it seems that there are now only 2 boats ahead of us,  so we have recovered our lost 45 mins at the start fairly well by now.
The wind has now dropped to 9 / 12 knots, so progress is slowing down, but this does not worry us too much, as we dont want to arrive
here in the dark again.  Weve had enough of that lark.....................
16.00hrs, Aileen is feeling much better by now, and is up and about.
Skipper get going on the dinner, 
Tonight , we are giong to have  :- raost , stuffed, and rolled  " belly Pork "  roast spuds, creamed potatoes mixed with
sweet potatoes, carrots, and green beans,   plus apple sauce..   The crackling was mighty.... yum yum..
We ate in the " Starlight Restaurant " as usual, with Skipper and Scotty having one G & T each 
The other two dont drink, but Daniel smokes like a trooper.
The wind died down to 5 knots, so all hands on deck and take down the " Kite "
We will have to motor, but all this is as was pridected by our weather forcastors.
Tomorrow, they say that the wind will be in the west for the early part of dawn, so we are staying 10 miles or so , south of our rum line.
to allow for that situation.
The watches are as follows   :-            21.00hrs,   /     00.00hrs       Daniel
                                                        00.00hrs    /     03.00hrs       Scotty
                                                        03.00hrs    /     06.00hrs       Skipper
                                                        06.00hrs    /     09.00hrs       Daniel
Well !  thats it for now,
Signed  :-    Stephen  Hyde   ( skipper )