22 November D-day
So after all the talking and planning and sailing and talking and organising and talking and packing it’s arrived. Up early, and most confessed to a troubled night. Into the bloc for a last shower before however long without washing! More general sorting of the boat, fitting life jackets, putting everything away so’s it wouldn’t fly around the cabin.
The girls came to the pontoon. A second last shower on the pontoon from the hose. There was a carnival atmosphere in the marina with loud (competing) bands and flares set off, and after around three thousand photographs a departure to many tears, into a traffic jam to get out of the marina.
The racers started 20 minutes before we did and were well away with their spinnakers visible.
We started at 1300 in fairly light winds about 120-140 degrees of the port bow. There were loads and loads of boats, lots in the ARC recognisable from their sail numbers, but many spectator boats. After we set off, some were holding spinnakers but this was difficult because there was a reasonable sloppy swell which shook the wind out of the sails: we seemed just as fast with our two foresails (ready for the twistle rig). Lots of different sized boats all moving at different speeds and because of the swell, we’d catch a boat one minute and then be passed by it a minute later.
Nick cooked chicken in the replacement pressure cooker which we ate after the sun had dropped quickly into the sea just after six. Five hours gone (and 35 miles of the 2 and a half thousand or so that we have to do).
Breakages none (yet)