Passage Making

Digiboat's "Product Testing"
Simon Blundell
Fri 29 Nov 2013 07:13
37:30.81S 067:32.95E

0623z 29/11

Conditions remain unchanged fro the last few days: 15kn NNW and
beam-reaching due E at 9-10 kn. We are averaging over 200nm per day with
most daily runs around 215 miles and almost flat seas. No swell to speak
of since leaving South Africa and with this lightish steady winds very
little wind chop. Nights still have a noticeable chill to them but the
sun generally breaks out during the day and tucked under the dodgers
once the sun is in the W hemisphere are popular sun traps to hang out
and watch the ever present albatross in our wake.

No fish now for more days than we care to remember, also no dolphins
since a day or two out from South Africa. Expecting this to change once
we're N enough to be clear of Southern Ocean chill. At our cruising
speed we'd be unlikely to land any fish we hook - well that seems to be
Ryan's current excuse as he's now taken over as head fisherman after his
double big-fish catch from earlier in this leg.

We do have a new crew member onboard - somewhere between a garden gnome
and a scruffy dog - after Kay cut Ryan's hair with plastic toy pinking
shears (which we figured although not as sharp as, were definitely safer
than the carving knife option). I believe some bleaching is going to be
today's addition which will possibly make him look more like a badly
shorn Jack Russell. At least his mother might recognise him then once
(if?) he gets home.

As the conditions are unchanged day by day and day to night, very little
sail trimming or changing occurs. Lucian "The Tweaker" does feel the
need to press a few hydraulic buttons every day or two, but none of this
ever changes our speed. So movie nights have become a bit of a regular
lately with the easy boat motion and lack of much else to do. We have a
comedy Feature session in the Saloon after dinner on the big screen and
I notice occasionally the simultaneous arthouse session in the aft
cockpit with Luc and Rob on watch on Luc's laptop.

Kay's had a rare rest day from the Galley yesterday as Robbo and Ryan,
who have not faired well this leg with their demotion to line cooks and
dish pigs, took control and cooked something up which was probably OK.
(It's only 12 hours later and I have no recollection as to what we ate
last night.) With nothing else to do, Kay enjoyed a lazy day in the sun
drenched aft cockpit sitting in the precariously mounted (and dubiously
fastened with a Ryan [k]not) mostly broken director's chair vaguely
lashed to the pushpit, and being handed wine glasses by her staff and
giggling more and more as the afternoon wore on.

Robbo and Ryan continue their foredeck workout sessions, this time
punching a defenceless sailbag for an hour or two. Even after (almost)
10,000 miles, as Rod and I noted while strenuously drinking our arvo
beer, they don't know yet how much of a flogging and whipping that sail
could return to them next time it needs manhandling in a storm!

With our Atlantic Ship's Cow now a fading memory, we do have the
Southern/Indian substitute aboard - about 5kg of vacuum wrapped Biltong.
It seems to have a similar effect to opening a can of Vegemite. Whenever
it appears there's an instant queue waiting for a slice, while the rest
are walking away in disgust. Luc and I tend to keep a pocketful always
on us and subconsciously chew on it throughout the days...

As you may be gathering ... we're really doing it tough down here in the
Southern Ocean ...