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Date: 13 Feb 2010 11:10:10
Title: Day 40

I’m sure you all heard the radio interview but Rich described me as “irritatingly normal” – we’ll ignore the “idiot” comment! See, spend 40 days with me in a confined space and I can brain wash anyone!


A quick snapshot of the last 48 hours onboard HMS Red Arrow….


Days at Sea:                 40. This current pair’s world record crossing is 40 days – RESPECT!

Last 48 Hours:              We were making reasonable progress until yesterday lunchtime and then we were becalmed. A lack of wind really slows us down and the sea was also very still.

Other Boats:                 Nothing again although last night was so dark we weren’t sure where the sea ended and the sky started and if some of the lights were stars or navigation lights on boats.

What’s been happening?

An update from the last couple of days…………………

1.     More Whales

This was a real treat and it wasn’t just one this time. My initial thought was that the whales must be Sperm whales, having detected a large build up of semen onboard! To be honest we’re not sure what they were but about 19:00 last night 5 or 6 whales joined us for a couple of hours and swam alongside, under, round us – very cool. I was trying to get them to swim in formation like the Red Arrows but they weren’t playing ball. They were about 30ft/40ft each and were very calm and placid. A real treat and Terry must have shit himself as we haven’t seen him since!

2.     Slowing Down

It is really frustrating when you are covering decent miles each shift and then the conditions change and your boat speed really slows down. Initially being becalmed and then this developing into a headwind and wave against has been really hard work. To get the 1 tonne Red Arrow moving at the start of these shifts requires 5 or 10 huge pulls on the oars, using every aching muscle and fighting the pain in our tender hands. Hopefully the conditions won’t last too long and we’ll be back to bigger mileage soon.   


Looking forward to;

  1. England getting another win in the 6 Nations tomorrow.
  2. Reaching 42 days at sea on Monday – 6 weeks since we started.
  3. Receiving a FedEx air drop with all our Valentines Cards!

Joke of the day goes to Livvy……….


“Two birds on a perch, one says to the other - Can you smell fish?”


A more than normal amount of personal messages from me………….


Chris & Denise -           Great to hear from you. All the Musto kit is brilliant and the waterproof socks are our best buy. Thanks for everything Guildford Marine has done for us. See you upon our return.


Cath -                           The bet is on – 5p it is!


Michelle & Steve –        When I left the UK I’m sure that I was joint owner of our house and therefore entitled to a joint say in all house decisions. Obviously, out of sight out of mind!

Steve – make yourself at home although Laura has cancelled Sky Sports!

Michelle – you’re staying in the garage after the incident at the Rammo’s!


Donnie Maclean -         Hello Mr Scotland and very kind of you to say so. If Rich got injured before you were on my shortlist of reserves.


Wendy Newton -           Thanks for the text. You’d love it out here – you can escape Katie!


Reynolds -                    Cheers for the race position texts, very helpful. Chat Sunday.


Suzy Ruffles -               Hi ya – long time no hear. I’d completely forgotten about bike pump incident in halls and burst out laughing when I read your email!


Lynda & Charles –        Strangely, Rich and I were only talking about the Panama Canal last night because Dave Brooks (solo rower) is planning to leave his boat in Antigua and return back later in the year and row through the canal and across the Pacific – nutter! Glad you had a nice holiday and Laura was certainly kept busy whilst you were away – both our PA’s! Have a good weekend with Dan & Sarah.


Leary -                          If your cake baking tribute is any good please do me a batch for when I get home!


Katie -                         Very jealous you are going to the England game this weekend. Enjoy


Stupples -                    It’s been too long but cheers for the text. Hope life is good in NY and you can kick a ball with your right foot now!


Rachel -                        It was really interesting to read your most recent Yacht Pals article and get an update about the other boats.


Nanny Doris -               I’ve just read your letter and it was really sweet, thank you. Looking forward to seeing you when we get home.  


Lucy & Jan Sutton –     Lovely to hear from you and I know that Nan is avidly dot watching too.


Debra S -                      For some reason I didn’t think they were Tuna’s – I don’t think of them as being in the Atlantic. Dorado’s work for me and I’ll try and convince Richie. Be strong for your mum.


Geoff & Shirley -           Thanks again for the quotes.


The row must go on – Antigua here we come.



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