Shooting stars and phosphorescence

Wed 16 Jan 2013 09:29
25:59.15N 16:28.91W

The wind stayed strong and constant all night, in fact shortly after first watch we all come on deck to take the main down, we'd rather have too little sail up at night than too much, so with just jibs and mizzen we ran at 7 or 8 knots all through the night, making great progress. However, the wind is due to slacken this afternoon so we will get to play with lightweight sails and may slow down some.

It was another beautiful night. My watch started in time to see the ruby red crescent of a few days old moon slide into the sea, lying on it's back instead of standing on one end like it usually does in the UK. Once it had set, the phosphorescence playing on the crest of each wave that broke past us become brighter, flashing green white jewels about 5cm across amid a glow of bright white foam. The shooting stars came into play too, streaking across the sky when I looked up at the windex (I guess they probably did their stuff when I wasn't looking too, but I prefer to believe they waited for me to look up before launching themselves into the atmosphere).

During the night two HUGE oil platforms came past, you could see them 15 miles off, one passed about 2 1/2 miles away, towering up and all lit up like a moving tower block from a cityscape.

We're feeling good. Another clear day has dawned (breakfast was yoghurt that I made from powdered milk over night, fresh fruit and oat crunchy cereal, Becks!) we have little aches and pains (like the knee I sprained last February skiing is playing up from being continually pivoted on as the boat rolls under me), but it's a happy feeling ache, the sort you get following an active day out in the sun. It still seems miraculous that one can put some bits of cloth up and go charging across an ocean so effectively!

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