Today was more prosaic than the wild excitement of the launch and
We had a good start to our day by watching the masts go in. It was
fascinating: all these people with skills that we never see when we
work in our offices. Things like knowing exactly where to put the
strop so that the crane lifted up the mast and balanced it perfectly
upright. Then the mast could just slide straight down into its seat.
Shrouds attached and the job was done! Twice over of course because
Elemiah is a ketch and has two masts. She looks like a real sailing
We also spent a long time watching the jelly fish over the edge of the
jetty. There were small white ones and big red ones - two different
kinds rather than baby ones and grown up jelly fish. We had a debate
on why there were so many in such cold water - surely they just live
in warm water? But everybody assures us that they come into Nova
Scotia at this time of year so they obviously don't mind cold water as
Nova Scotia is bathed in the Labrador Current and so the water is
still really cold - that's what makes for the notorious fogs. Another
question - apart from humans, what eats jellyfish? The answer is
apparently turtles. Jelly fish can sting and some varieties can even
kill a human.
The rest of the day involved sorting out our tool kit and making sure
that the order for life jackets had gone through. We have bought a
kind of life jacket which is very thin and so does not impede your
movements. It inflates automatically if you fall in the water and if
you land face down, you will automatically be turned over. Having
rescued you from drowning, it then protects you from water torture by
waves and spray with a spray hood which comes over your head. The
spray hood might protect you from being stung by a jelly fish as well
but it doesn't say that on the packet.
I have just finished reading Life of Pi by Yann Martel, given to me by
Nicole- thanks Nicole!. It's a novel but it seems to owe quite a lot
to the real life story of Steve Callahan, told in his book Adrift
which was the previous book that I read. They share the theme of
surviving in a life raft for an incredible number of days. I also
read the case of The Queen v Dudley and Stephens, 1884, obligingly
given to me as a parting gift by Udi from DLA Piper's Birmingham
office. This case is about cannibalism in a life raft. Just the
types of book to scare yourself silly with before embarking on an
Atlantic crossing - really scary and gory.
They did give me ideas for what to put into the grab bag (that's the
bag you grab when you abandon ship and get into your life raft) but I
don't think I'll tell any of the rest of the crew about them - well at
least until we have cast off.
The battery on the camera needs charging so photos will follow tomorrow.