Wednesday 27th June - More Time-travelling Required

Jon & Carol Dutton
Wed 27 Jun 2012 09:51

5:06.34S 120:42.96W

Wednesday 27th June – Re-synchronise Watches Again

 It’s around 0200 on Wednesday morning according to the ship’s clock and my watch.  It’s about 1000 in the UK.  A few hours ago – at around 2100 our time - we crossed the 120ºW meridian so at lunchtime today we’ll have to put watches back another hour.  That’ll put us 8 hours behind GMT and 9 hours behind BST.  We’ll go through this rigmarole once more before we get to the Marquesas, as we cross the 135ºW meridian.  Then, on arrival, we’ll go back a further 30 minutes to conform to the GMT-9.5 hours local time adopted in the Marquesas.

It’s always rather pleasant being around the Equator and approaching a meridian at which the time goes backwards.  Dinner can be eaten in the cockpit at 1900 just as the sun is setting.  The next day, of course, having adjusted the time, the lights go out with a bang at around 1800 so we need to deploy the caravan awning light in the bimini to see the way to our mouths for a few days whilst we work our way several more degrees west. 

The wind has held good, Percy and Orville are doing their stuff, we’re making around 7 knots on average straight for the archipelago and we have something under 1,200NM to go.  By this time tomorrow we should be 2/3s of the way there with around 1,000NM to run.

We were visited by a tropic bird today – resplendent with characteristic long white tail streamers.  It circled several times and looked as though it might cadge a lift.  It made several very convincing approaches looking much like a Harrier from the Fleet Air Arm might have looked in those far-off halcyon days when they were allowed  proper aircraft and had something to land them on.   Anyway, it thought better of it (perhaps it saw our Ensign and thought that, by now, we’d all have forgotten what to do if it tried to land).  Rather churlishly, given the goodwill flowing upwards from Arnamentia’s deck, it attempted a bombing run before departing.  It missed.  That doesn’t sound at all like the Fleet Air Arm.   

John Whyte of the OCC mentioned in an e-mail that he and Lyn had been a bit surprised by the amount of fouling on their topsides at the end of their passage from the Galapagos to the Marquesas some years ago.  Steady now, we took considerable trouble to ensure our topsides and waterline were sparkling before we left the Galapagos Islands.  However, be that as it may, a quick look aft along the sides of the boat from the bow reveals a depressing sight I’m afraid.  There are, indeed, large areas of caramel coloured fouling in evidence, stretching several feet above the waterline, which will have to be removed somehow on arrival.  And here we were thinking that, as long as we kept moving smartly along, the stuff wouldn’t have time to attach itself.  Hm.