Mariposa Blog
Robert Newman
Sat 27 Nov 2010 07:56
With Willy and Frosty now having  the sat comms back up and running, we are all in high spirits..... or perhaps that's the rum?
Whatever the reason, we are now making reasonable progress south / west-ish (this afternoon / evening with a little help from the iron sail as the morning winds died away almost a quickly as they had come up) and despite the fact that the wind keeps changing direction and strength, we are still on a heading for the most north western island on CVI. There are still no reports of the trade winds and judging from a number of sightings and radio chatter, there are a number of other ARC yachts also heading the same way. ETA CVI late Sat / early Sun morning and if the trades aren't blowing, our plan is to take on more fuel and head out west for St. Lucia (c2200nm) ASAP. 
The days seem to go very quickly, as between watch shifts the daily routines of washing (obsessively/ compulsively Spiller) ourselves, our clothes, the boat, the plates, saucepans, cutlery etc and continually trimming / re-setting the sails as the wind direction changes, together with having to make general running repairs to the boat and off course occasional eating and drinking, seem to take up all the time, especially when the swell increases and the boat is rolling.  
However, we have had a good day, despite the fact that Frosty managed to knock over a cup of coffee this morning all over the map table and yes, in true Carry on Sailing style, there was the only copy of the Atlantic Map laid out on the table and yes, the Mariposa Log Book was open underneath it!!!!  After much cursing and mopping up (and much to Spiller's horror, the using up of vital supplies of kitchen towel), the map was saved but the Log Book is struggling and the whole comms area now smells like a Starbucks (which is actually a pleasant alternative to everywhere else on board!!!).  On that note we were planning on a team swim this afternoon!  Frosty, is in fact, managing to spill a drink or food (over the table or on himself) at every meal time and may yet manage to take over Spiller's nickname!) We are thinking of getting him a Pelican bib in CVI, to save further mishaps! He is blaming it on lack of sleep, but, we think it is just a cry for attention!
Lunch was Skipper's turn and he did not let us down, producing a very fine pasta salad (with yet more Chorizo) which we had with a chilled beer or two. Soon after we had our first Whale encounter; we think this was a Pygmy Sperm Whale, which was on the surface on our bow, so we slowed up and videoed for a few minutes before he/she plunged into the depths; truly awesome creature. The Skipper panicked somewhat when he realized that we still had our fishing lines out and the prospect of catching a Whale sent him into flying for the steering wheel to bear away. Thinking about it, in the absence of any trade winds it might not be such a bad thing to hook a whale, as long as it was going west towards St. Lucia!  
Later in the afternoon we did manage to hook a reasonable sized Dorado (3ft or so long..."honest gov'nor") and this was duly landed, dispatched and filleted, which left the Skipper and the transom covered in blood and guts (and looking like Sweeny Todd), but he loves it (Bear Grylls would be no match?!!!)! More sinister though was a large, dark silver shape 10ft or so below the surface  as we were landing the thrashing fish on the transom?! Frosty thought that this might be a plastic bag, but, when we looked again the silver object had gone. Needless to say, the team swim was postponed!!
Supper was an excellent chicken curry (again prepared by the Skipper),  who had swapped evening cooking for washing up with Spiller.....there's a shock! Dinner was accompanied by a fruity little white wine (there's another shock?!).
More soon....over and out