Half Way

Beoga's Madventure
Henry and Marina Lupton
Mon 30 Nov 2009 17:59
Well the distance to go is half the given overall distance. I reckon we've added a few miles to that. We certainly did last night. Wind shifted during my watch to pretty much due east. We were on a starboard tack and that meant aiming more west instead of south west.In essence we were heading to America instead of the carribean. SInce we are cruising we arent into getting everyone up in the middle of the night to gybe so by this morning we were back north of the 21st parallel despite having crossed it earlier.Frustrating to be going in the wrong direction but we gybed this morning and hoisted the kite again. The benefit fo having gone far west was that we have a great angle to the current wind which is blowing 20-25 knots. Steering is tiring and since the sail is on the right hand side its not sheltering us from the sun as it has up until now but we are honking along since 9am when we hoisted. Did 60 miles in 6 hours. Much as I'd like to keep it up we will be conservative and take in the spinnaker for the night unless we see a significant drop in wind speed.  As ever the weather and positions come in as I send this.
So half way. Expected to find a big X in the sea or as Dermot said a petrol station with a sign saying last stop for 1350 miles. "Last of the wrapping paper and sail rope!"
Nothing there though and still no company although Cormac spotted a brief appearance on the AIS system which picks the postion of big boats and shows where they are going and how fast. Small boats have them too and we fitted one, as most ARC boats seem to have, before we left.
We really are a long way from everywhere now.
We left Galway in a hurry to catch good weather but my sister Ger still managed to put a halfway goodie pack on board for us that we just opened with our celebratory cranberry juice again (not sure if its cos it looks like wine or cos we just have a bunch of it) The pack included M&Ms (cormac the cookie monster will be pleased), rescue remedy (my sister is the family witch you see) to pick us up and echinacia (or euthansia as I call it) to ward off all ails. Pa and Mir had also left greetings for half way which should involve the use of a guitar but the boat is going from roundey roundey and roley poley to upsy downsy and no guitar would survive. I am getting in trouble for not using nautical terminology.Its a habit from having new folk out when we are in renville, if you dont know sailing or you do and dont know the boat  then its just easier to say pull the blue rope. Cormac and I were roaring from the bow to free off the green rope on the left when 3 people went to the right- it seems folk know starboard from port better than left and right but its my fault- hmph...
Ger's potions may be needed yet though. Marie and Barra got us sorted out with a very comprehensive first aid kit before we left and thank God only anti seasickness, antihistamine and a few plasters have been used so far. However my sister inlaw Aine who is also a Doc recommended Germoline ointment for minor stuff since it has some numbing properties. Welllll it was in use 5 or 6 times a day. Rope burns, bumped knees, cut fingers the list goes on and on but the germoline was wiped on each time ( anyone see My Big Fat Greek Wedding- well its like the windowlene). Anyway, todays drama,  the Germoline made it to the cockpit and made a run for it. Some flying fish will have spotted it using their newly acquired pair of reading spec donated by Lara and will have made off with it. You would be surprised at the level of grief.but Im sure some marine family will be making equal good use of it.
In the middle of the middle way celebration, delighted with ourselves when a big bang declared the end of a pulley block from the spinnaker rope. A reminder of the loads that are on the boat. I had a spare but its sobering.
Monday is also the start of week 2 and the food has been packed in week sections. New cereal, yipee ( Im a man of simple tastes) and less fresh food (not helped by the fact that one of us knocked off the fridge by accident in the last couple of days so some bits went off in there too. To save on space Joan and Lara disposed of a lot of outer packing making some things a lucky dip. Written on a pack this morning was, "if you havn't guessed what it is by now - stop eating it".
We provide the best of facilities on board Beoga, Marina had a reflexology session a la Lara yesterday to help her bad back. Today she discovered we have a bidet! We close the inlets and outlets to things like the toilet for the obvious reason that they are openings to the ocean and less obvious reasons that the one we have is badly designed and can syphon back up. We havent bothered closing the tap from the sink drain to the outside since it was so high up. While showering this morning in our sled ride she spotted the sea gushing up the sink drain. New rule on the sea cocks me thinks.
God almighty what are they at up top. Boat just went all over the place and is shaking as well as the roley,pitchey, etc. Cormac spotted a surfable wave I reckon. Its hard to avoid today i admit they are crying out to be surfed upon but if ya over do it then someone else has to dump rope like crazy until the boat comes back upright.
Winches grinding, they are going for it again......
Boat picks up, Im in the aft cabin and can hear the rush off the stern - gushing building. its the ideal point of sailing. Hoping we can keep the angle for longer. Will know soon, when todays weather comes in. A trough is developing ahead of us which would interrupt these trade wind conditions and potential give us head winds followed by little wind. This is normal for this time of year when the trade winds are not fully established. By christmas they settle into a more regular pattern we are told.
Now at 20:44.8N 39:05.2W
Dermot thinking of using channel 16: Supermacs, Supermacs, Supermacs this is Beoga.
Transmission Ends.