Day 5 - 24 hour run

Thu 30 Nov 2006 09:52
As I now have a little more time on my hands, I have been back through some photos of preparations for the start to give more of a feel for what we have been up to. This one was a familiar sight as James manfully attempted to fill a 285 litre tank with the equivalent of a straw.  We had no water at all for most of the week in Las Palmas and no pressure in the hose on the rare occasions it was on.  Thankfully, we managed to get a full tank just before we left!
James using a straw to fill the water tanks
Mike and Lou (my nephew and his wife who are also doing the ARC with a Norwegian couple on a boat called Nano) helped Nigel with the veg scrubbing. I have taken a lot of flak for having the marigolds on board but I think they rather suit Nigel.
Mike and Lou with Nigel cleaning veg at the 11th hour
We would all have starved to death by now without Wattie.  Not only did he provision the boat, spending a suspicious number of hours with the lovely uniformed girls from Cortes Ingles (the Las Palmas equivalent of Waitrose) but he has also taken on much more than his share of the cooking on board. He tends to regard my offers of help as a threat rather than assistance! (Although I was allowed to make porridge this morning)
Mr Big in the catering department
Linked closely to the excellent catering, we narrowly averted a major disaster this morning when I caught a whiff of the heads (the ones used by the motley crew, not my luxury en-suite set up in the bow!) when Nigel went for a pee at 0500.  Even he cannot produce such a noxious smell in the time he took and I began to suspect the worst.  Sure enough, the valve to the holding tanks had been closed in harbour in spite of my dire warnings of the possible consequences (no-one has owned up to this crime as yet) and the tank was full to the point of bursting.  I had been told of a nasty experience on another Sweden Yacht when this had happened and they were unable to pump it out using the sea loo- the unfortunate owner had had to unscrew the cap of the pump-out pipe and a volcano of sewage had erupted over him and covered a 10 m2 area around the pontoon!  With this happy thought in mind, I gingerly opened the sea cock and was relieved to find that it emptied itself with a series of bangs as the tank returned to its normal size.  The search for the scurvied individual who closed this valve will continue for many days to come!!!
Other than that, we continue towards 20N 30W with under 10 knots of wind and wait for the trades to fill in.......stay tuned