Andy's quick night time blog

Rebel T
Tim Walsh
Tue 11 Sep 2007 03:57
30:01.36N 13:54.04W

Dear all,

It's 2:45 am and I thought I would do a quick blog whilst Dominik and Trevor
watch small specks of light on the horizon. I'm listening to Joni Mitchell
right now and she just sang "The wind is in from Africa, last night I could
not sleep....." Most ironic, maybe if the wind was in from Africa I would
have got some sleep. We are still having to use the engines, as there is no
useful wind off Africa or anywhere. I was off watch from 10 last night
through to 2 am, but the whole time I could not cut out the sound of the
throbbing diesels, for the four hours I got no sleep and now I am on watch
till 6. We should hopefully be arriving at Lanzarotte around evening today
(Tuesday) so by first light we should sight land, therefore I doubt I'll
want to sleep then either!

During last night's watch we had some excitement with a large vessel. We
were watching out for vessels etc when we saw the navigation light of a
vessel on out port side. The light was very bright and clear and therefore
must be close, we looked at our A.I.S. Radar, (this gives details of all
vessels with 32 nautical miles of us, gives name of boat, speed and
direction of all boats over 150 feet), this showed nothing, surely it must
be closer than 32 miles! The light was very bright.... maybe it was a
fishing vessel using bright lights to fish by..... We turned on the normal
radar again nothing and still nothing on AIS. The vessel was heading
straight for us, it was not showing port or starboard lights, what ever it
was it was heading straight at us, and it was coming in quickly, it's
solitary light was now above the horizon and rising as it rushed in on use.
We were now straining with binoculars to try and make out the vessel from
the pitch black. By the height of the navigation light it must be less than
a mile away (sounds a lot but with it bearing down on you it isn't).
Clearly the other vessel had not seen us or it would have made it's
intentions clear. The navigation light still rose higher from the horizon
the answer became clearer, it was Venus and not a navigation light. Boy
that planet is so bright it even has a refection on the sea!

Today the dolphins came to play again (getting blasé about them) I missed
the whale, but the others saw that, and we saw loads of turtles, but I am
not sure I got them on camera.

Just before starting this blog though the dolphins visited again and they
were amazing! Because it is night the phosphorescence is visible, the
dolphins were swimming and jumping in front but because of the
phosphorescence they sparkled and glowed along with leaving sparkling trails
about 10 to 15 feet behind them, dolphins approaching from the sides could
also be seen in the pitch black as bright sparkling torpedoes coming in from
all sides. It was just like being part of a cartoon, truly surreal, so glad
I saw it. I have tried filming it but I think it was too dark but we will

Hope all is well at home, miss you all, will phone when I can. Tim and
Rupert were telling us about when they went Kayaking around Greenland,
sounds amazing!

Loads of love to all,