JJMoon Diary
Barry and Margaret Wilmshurst
Thu 21 Mar 2013 14:45
The cruising life is full of variety.  One minute the happy blogger is musing romantically about a wonderful way of life shortly to be lost, the next he is up to his neck in the proverbial soup aghast at Life’s vicissitudes.
The good news is that we had a total wipe out of the navigation instruments on Tuesday afternoon, including the autopilot.  While hand steering we managed to get the Hydrovane self-steering gear set up and pointing us in the right direction, a small miracle as I have to confess we have not used it in anger for several years.  While still basking in quiet satisfaction I managed to get the instruments going again.  I am not at all sure how I did it, I think I may have electronic fingers.  All’s well on that front so far but the Hydrovane needs some TLC once we get to port and plenty of WD40.
Then, during Tuesday night, in following winds of 20 to 30 knots, our genoa foresail shredded in three places. This is galling as we had the sail serviced while in Richards Bay and were assured by the sailmaker that it had “ years of life left in it yet”.  With 6500 ocean miles still to go, far from land and sailmakers, we must replace it.  North Sails from Cape Town have already promised to build a new genoa “fairly quickly” but.....
So we are chuntering gently north trying to conserve fuel as much as possible and hoping that diesel will be fairly accessible in Walvis Bay.  It may be another multi-jerrycan job – enough to darken a sunny day.
The days have been sunny and warm but the nights have been cold, horribly cold.  After an hour on watch each of us is longing for our turn to end.  When we retire below we sleep under two duvets and a blanket.
We hope to reach Walvis Bay on Saturday.  Then we must look for a shop where we can buy a long tape measure so that we can provide the sailmaker with a multitude of data.  Heh ho.