Thursday, 22.34.2N 24.21.6W

David Batten
Thu 28 Nov 2013 19:57
Wednesday. Eventful afternoon.  A  very fickle wind and a feeling of very poor progress beating into a light and variable.  As is always the way with beating, whichever tack is chosen, it seems to be the wrong one and there are a lot of headwinds in the southern route to come according to the Grib files and no sign of any trade winds coming to this part of the ocean any time soon.  We all agree that while the winds are from the West, we will go South and when they so South, we will go West.   The fact that the wind direction was varying by 90 degrees whatever and the sea was coming from a stopping direction, only added to the problem.  Eventually, skipper's wife had a tantrum and the engine was employed to help keep the boat up into the wind.

Next event was the engine switching itself off.  Definite symptoms of fuel starvation, so all off watch crew employed in finding where air might be coming in to the fuel supply.  This always means the main floor boards have to come up and all the tool kits come out, all of which slide around the floor and attack the members of crew peering into the bilges and engine room.  Fault identified and offending part replaced, engine on again and we enjoy a night of very difficult motor sailing, with "No Hands Hans", the auto helm, not able to help out because of the wind shifts.

Thursday. Beautiful dawn and lovely sunny morning, with SY Gabian IV outlined in the sun rise.   With very little wind, an upright boat and the engine heating the water, the crew complete all their jobs and then indulge in hot showers.  How good did they feel!  This was followed by a gourmet lunch and siesta for all the off watch crew.

We have managed to sail for about half an hour today, but at least are going in the right direction  and the engine is on fairly low revs to conserve fuel.

David G is now cooking supper, it smells delicious, so signing off.


PS.  Skipper is becoming a little obsessed with his new mistress, the Grib files and has spent most of the day attending to them.

The Ship's Boy has his own chart on which the Cap Verde Abyssal Plain has been renamed the Abysmal Plain.

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