Global Yacht Racing's EH01
Global Yacht Racing - sponsors: Caspian Services
Wed 12 Nov 2008 16:49
A little bit of Rod!

Altogether now . . . . . . . "We-are-sail-ing, we-are-sail-ing, across-the-dark-sea . . . . . . etc. etc.!!!

Yep you guessed it - the motor is off and we are actually sailing!!!

Thank God! The weather gribs have actually done what they said they were
going to do. It stated that at precisely 0700 hours this morning the wind
was predicted to veer round and build to a steady 20 knots and that is
exactly what it did. Now it would be a foolish skipper to rely solely on
the weather files received but there is always a little part of me that
hopes they will hold true and - yep today I caught a break!

We are now currently rocketing down wind with a poled out No.3 in the
direction of Las Palmas. Now for those of you who have no idea what I am
talking about a poled-out situation is very simple to follow - the main sail
is out over one side of the boat and the headsail is out over the other side
being held there by a heavy duty somewhat over-engineered scaffolding pole.
This allows us to present as much sail as possible to the wind that is blowing from over
my right shoulder and thus propelling us forward - there! Downwind sailing
in five lines!

So as night draws in I would like you to imagine if you will an ice rink!
It is saturday morning and the ice is packed. Full of people - some who clearly have
done this before and some who quite frankly have absolutely no idea what they are doing,
clinging on to one another for support and bumping their way around in a very erratic motion
with no clear direction.

As you arrive at the rink you survey the scene of carnage. You put on your skates, warm clothing and,
just for good measure - a blindfold! Somehow you have to negotiate you way across the carnage to
the other side without being knocked down.

This is what it feels like when you pop out from the Straits of Gibraltar into an ocean - boats everywhere,
following no particular route or pattern. Some who have clearly done this before and trawl up and down the ocean's
main motorways day in, day out and some who have absolutely no idea which way is up and rely on those they come across to avoid them. Welcome to ocean sailing!

In true EH01 blog fashion I turn once again to the subject of food and the fabulous smells that are wafting around the boat - Paul is creating! As an ex-chef Paul is more than competant in the kitchen and we as a crew wait with anticipation for the final outcome. I will report in tomorrow!!

For now though - it is more celestial navigation and some helming for me.

Skipper and Crew of EH01