Day 9 Noon Position 21:03.946N 37:59.132W

Bill and Judy Stellin
Sun 9 Dec 2007 16:43
Hooray,  we are half way across.  Right now our log show we've gone 1335 nautical miles with 1294 left to go.  That of course assumes we take the direct line from where we are now to Barbados.  Weather plays a big role in our day to day meanderings.  We started out at about 28 degrees north latitude and instead of heading directly for Barbados, went south, looking for trade winds.  Right now we are more or less on a rhumb line course for Barbados and are at 20 degrees  46 minutes north latitude, quite a bit south of where we started.  We may head south even further as the winds are now very light and could remain this way for several days.
We had a marvelous night, great winds of just the right strength and direction.  Plus the seas have moderated so we are not being tossed about like over the past several days.  One of the benefits of heavy weather sailing, is that you have wind.  Now with conditions much more calm the wind is disappearing.
Today we emptied our spare water jugs into the tanks and found we had only used 15 gallons of fresh water.  We still have 100 gallons left.  More than  enough and for some showers to boot.
Last  nights sailing was like being in a dream.  It was as smooth as being in a train, very quiet and hauling along at almost 8 knots.  Our 24 hours mileage total was the best to date at 171 miles.  I hope we have the chance to hit a 200 miler before we're done.  It will all depend on wind strength.
Even though its only been 8 days out, our bodies are taking a beating.  Immersed in salt all the time and getting thrown around every minute takes a toll.  Little sores that don't heal quickly and bruises that have our bodies black and blue.  We had forgotten what a tremendous amount of work this is.  Neither one of us has had any time to read.
We just try to keep the boat moving and sleep.  Today I slept from about 7AM to noon.  What a treat. Wind is very light now so I have to stop and see what we can do.  Earlier we put up the symmetrical spinnaker and took it down after about half an hour of watching it almost wrap around the head stay.  When we were taking it down, it did wrap and took 45 minutes to untangle.  There is simply to much rock and rolling and not enough wind.  We are currently wing and wing and will soon change that so that both sails are on a port tack and head up, which means we will be going further south looking for some more wind.  I will let you know if it was worthwhile tomorrow.