Where are we?

Magnetic Attraction
Roger and Margaret Pratt
Mon 25 Nov 2013 13:20
25 November
Course: 220
Engine Hrs: 2
Days Run: 115M
Total: 255M
Where the hell are we?
The day started with a light south easterly 6-8knts, we sailed close hauled on port tack, making 3-4knts @ 240 degrees, not exactly where we wanted to go, but at least sailing. After an hour or so the wind died and veered to the south, we ran the engine for about an hour. It continued to veer and build at 8knts, we 'tacked on the header' and sailed close hauled on starboard, 200 degrees. The wind continued to build and veer all afternoon, peaking at about 16knts. We steered our correct course, 220 and the speed increased to 7knts on a reach. Our run for the day of 115M was much better than we had expected with the forecast show very little wind. Margaret was 'Mother' for the day, not something she has aspired to in her career, but we were well looked after, tomato and red pepper soup, fresh bread and cheese for lunch. Dinner of lasagna with a green salad and fresh pineapple and cream at 6.00pm, eaten in a somewhat bouncy cockpit whilst on a broad reach, averaging 7knts. Roger had some excitement mid afternoon, the GPS signal started to give erratic readings, this is the 'foundation' for all the other instruments. Speed over the ground of 160kts was a 'bit of a clue' as was our position in the Moroccan desert, on the chart plotter. I enjoyed steering by hand on the magnetic compass, whilst Roger investigated the problem, our 'technocrat' has not revealed the cure to the remainder to the crew, but  normal service has resumed and we are told we no longer have to be tested on the sextant instructions!. Lucy had the most exciting sail of the day shortly after sunset, the wind increased to 18knots from the North. She surfed along listening to disco music whilst treating the rest of us to 'bongo drums' ,as she ran about on deck, claiming to be adjusting the sails to accommodate frequent wind shifts. Overnight the wind again dropped for our Captain, who drifted along at 3kts or less,  Margaret picked up the pace at daybreak, but on a dead run we were rolling a lot in a swell of 1.5mtrs over the quarter. After morning tea, we decided to lower the mainsail and try the twin head sails, poled out on either side to work like a 'low maintenance' spinnaker. This was new experience, after 2hrs, with the entire crew working together, we are now sailing along on a dead run at 4.8kts in a 10kts of wind. In fairness we have not touched the sails for over two hours, time will tell, but I am not looking forward to changing the set up in a hurry, certainly not a technique to trial on Oulton Broad!.  Bryan (Mother).