Week One to Antigua
Skipper and First Mate Millard (Big Bear and Pepe)
Sun 23 Feb 2020 18:00
8:06.91 S 15:43.05 W
First Week at Sea to Jolly Harbour, Antigua
Except for one day overcast and rain, these have been our views out to sea.
Well after seven days at sea we have covered 813 nautical miles, an average of 4.84 knots per hour – not too bad considering. It is much warmer, only tee shirts needed overnight – sometimes.
On Friday night I heard the squawk of a tern and again last night, other than that we have seen nothing and I mean nothing until this morning when an injured chap – or just shattered, a tern fluttered in, pooped all along the deck (note first picture just beyond the small window) and settled behind where Bear sits.
When I got up this morning, I had Bear catch him in a tee shirt and we gave him a couple of teaspoons of water. Off he waddled most offended. We wait for the outcome as he didn’t fancy the proffered flying fish.....the deck is covered with tiny ones, flying fish that is. The other night a huge one lunged about but although I could smell him, I couldn’t find any sign, so he must have returned himself home without my help.
Delighted to report our chap found himself a comfy spot on the genoa sheet and slept for an hour and by one o’clock he was eyeing the sea. By two he did a fly by as if in thanks. Wonder if I’ll hear him tonight. Indeed I saw him reunited with his mate, fly back and forth and disappear. I heard him and his wife chattering in the dark and think they sleep on the towing generator.
Some of this weeks ‘Happy Pictures’ with the final one being a change – Bear fighting to do up his zip. I now get him to go ‘to proper bed’ on his 18:00 – 20:00 off-watch. But it’s not my real sleep time, just rest time. Funny how many times he has overslept...... Matters not to me, makes me laugh and the thought of yeah, right and I start my four hours when he pops his head out. Lots of Oooo sorry I’m late. Nonsense, I’m usually deep in listening to my Desert Island Disc Archive. Yes, he is getting ‘fluffier’ but not to the point of annoying him. I did suggest a full shave (heaven forbid, he looks like a cheap, plastic three piece suite) but I’ll cut it soon and certainly before we get in. By then, if it stays, he will look like Captain Birdseye.......
The week has passed peacefully. Each day we have played backgammon and a few days of Mex Train. Totals for the year so far are :-
Backgammon: Bear 22 and me 21, yes but you are up US$79. Peanuts, I would like to average a hundred a month. HUH.
Mex Train Doms: Bear 5 and me 9. Double HUH, but you did win the last two days, just think it could be worse. Treble HUH.
We only had the engine motoring us along for the first twenty minutes after leaving St Helena and once for three hours when we went in search of some more wind (charging up at the same time). We do have to charge more with this alternator as it doesn’t have the same oomph as the last one. Sadly, we have to one lot of two hours after daybreak, one lot of three starting at 18:00, another two hours during the night. Will have to eat the freezer empty asap, yes, sir..... May try the generator during the coming week.
Genoa swapped from side to side meaning some zig-zagging. Currently we are on course doing five and a half knots. The sea has been kind throughout. On Tuesday it rained really hard but blue skies and sunshine since.
Bear eats well each lunchtime and today he is having spag bol. He has enjoyed lamb sandwiches, venison pie, beef curry, biryani, pasta bake and sweet and sour pork. The tomatoes are still going strong, we have finished one of the costly cucumbers and the bananas are ripening (Bear has had one with tinned fruit on his muesli for the past three mornings – nine left).
ALL IN ALL STEADY PROGRESS
ALL IS GOOD ABOARD THE GOOD SHIP