ARC 2015 - Day 12 - Dec 02- Finding Nina

Steve and Lynda Cooke
Thu 3 Dec 2015 18:15
18:22N 36:55W

Day 12 | Dec 3

Finding Nina

Out here in the middle of the ocean, it seems we are all alone. It's a big ocean and even 200 boats scattered across the route to St Lucia don't make much of a dent in the immenseness of this huge amount of space. We know we are not alone because of email, text and satellite phone, which enable us to communicate with the outside world and even post these blogs. Other systems on board enable us to access the weather, relay our position to the ARC team, and identify passing boats. While the first few days of our voyage were quite busy, seeing other yeachts, tankers, freighters and fishing boats, we haven't seen any other boats for at least three days.

But we're not completely alone out here. The dolphins we have mentioned in previous posts haven't been seen for a while - maybe we are not playing enough Coldplay to attract them, or maybe the mid-Atlantic dolphins prefer Beyonce. It always gives us a lift to see the dolphins playing around the boat, racing alongside us and darting through our bow wave. We haven't as yet managed to catch any fish, although two flying fish, as if in sympathy, have hurled themselves onto our decks. And we have seen a few of a particular species of bird, even as far away from land as we are. They are smallish birds - terns perhaps? - with small chubby bodies and long thin wings. They dart across the waves, very low, with the intention of picking off small fish close to the surface. Our ornithological knowledge being virtually nil, we haven't a clue what they are.

We have a feeling that all the other fish are congregating round our stern wondering what on earth our intrepid fishing team are doing. The conversation might go like this:

"Dad, what are those humans on the boat doing?"
"Dunno son. Looks like they are tying lots of coloured things together with string. And then throwing the string into the water. Then they tie another lot of things together with string and throw that into the water"
"Oh look Dad, the two bits of string have joined together. Maybe it's a game to see which piece of string can catch the other one?"
"Oh yes, so that one's won the game. Looks like his prize is to disentangle all the bits of string."

Much much later: "He must have really enjoyed his prize Dad, he's taken ages doing it."
"Ooh look, he's got a new shiny thing on the end of his string."
"What's the shiny thing doing?"
"It's bouncing on the waves son. I think they are trying to teach it to waterski."
"It's not very good at it Dad, I'll go and try to encourage it"
"Don't you dare, Nemo. Stay here. Nemo? NEMO? Where are you now? Oh damn, here we go again..."

lots of things missing today. Missing effort in setting the sails, the SSB radio, VHF chat, sight of any other vessels, Steve's lure, and fish.