Day 13 Distance to Antigua 1344 nm (nautical miles).
Distance covered since yesterday at 16.00 - 149 nm. Average speed over
24 hrs = 6.2 kts
At 09.48 this morning, the GPS waypoints read Jolly Harbour (Antigua)
1388 nm Puerto Calero (Lanzarote) 1388nm. So, in theory, exactly half
way as the seagull flies. In our case with those awful SE winds we had
for the first 5 or 6 days, we are well past the half distance mark.
Anyway, definately a milestone and too late to turn back if we have
forgotten anything. Not that we can even contemplate what it is like
going the other way against the current, the trade winds and those big
rollers. I don't think you'd ever get there and I don't think any yacht
would even try it. They do say that the quickest way back to the Med
from the Canaries is via the Caribbean. Now I know why.
The ARC started from Las Palmas on Sunday and is a much bigger event
that our BWR - in terms of numbers that is. About 300 yachts left from
Las Palmas and are heading to St Lucia. It attracts some top racing
boats and I think, last year, the winning boat took 11 days - makes my
blood boil. We shall soon be looking over our shoulder at night looking
out for boy racers. Oi mate! - hare and tortoise. Overtaking vessel
keep clear as it says in the collision regs. Trouble is I'm just not
convinced that half the people are even looking. I called another ship
today that came up on the AIS. Team Effort it was called. I thought -
"maybe it's a really fast trimaran leading the ARC" - no, just another
tramp steamer going west. Hardly spoke a word of English. Didn't know
what a yacht was and didn't want to discuss his destination. Team Effort
I thought. Hardly. Glad we didn't need assistance or a barrel of oil.
He asked me where I was!! I said "Over here , look out your window to
the left" (no I didn't really). I said, "I'm 11.5 miles to the south of
you." Oh yes" he mumbled, "I see you now". Reminds me of the old boy
who took a wrong turn and ended up driving up the M1 the wrong way. His
wife heard about it on the radio and gave him a call on the 'phone.
"George" she said, "There's mad idiot driving the wrong way up the M1".
He replied "I know dear, but it's not just one, there's hundreds of 'em"
. I digress. Back to the sailing.
The bad news is, the wind died at about beer o'clock - I mean warm beer
o'clock. "Oh no." I thought, "we'll be out here all day". Silly thought
that was. We'll be out here for bleeding weeks! Battery was a bit flat
anyway (thats my excuse) plus I promised Sam a shower when we got half
way. (Save water I thought - shower with a friend- no chance in our
little shower . So, it was engine on - first time since Day 6 at 00.31
according to the log. Not bad, needs a run to keep it in working order
I told myself. We sailors hate running our engines. Costs far too much
money, destroys the ozone layer and is against the purist principal.
But compared to slatting sails it's the lesser of two evils. Anyway,
it's only to heat the water for the shower and not to get there any
quicker and as soon as the wind comes up, off it goes, hot water or no
Actually, I've just popped up to the poop deck and it looks like the
usual 4 o'clock breeze is a cummin' so I'd best be off and set the
mainbrace. Oooh aar!
Sorry no photographic evidence today. Sam said no! (whattad I say?)
Footnote - Running the engine seems to have got the 'fridge going
again. Beats me. Me thinks I'll never understand 'fridges (or women -
go on... just one pic for the folks back home). Anyone got any ideas,
email me. About 'fridges I mean, not women. On the other hand .....
PS - Fishing line is out again. With the 'fridge on the blink, we need
all the help we can get. Had to throw away some veg today including a
whole lettuce which had gone brown and slimy