Back to Reality

Summer 2022
John Andrews
Sun 22 May 2011 16:33

34:27.6N 58:03.5W


Day 7


Well, today is a different kind of day. The sun rose to reveal grey skies, a dark sea and the wind blowing a good force 5 to 6. We are cracking along at a good 8+ knots, occasionally reaching 10 knots. This is in stark contrast to the last two days. Chris and Fernande were becoming seriously worried that they would have to tell friends and family that they had spent the voyage lounging around reading books, gazing out over an azure sea glinting in the sun, quaffing bubbly as celebrations demanded and enjoying the increasingly gourmet food emerging from the galley. Not a problem now, and today’s grib file predicts more difficult conditions to come.

We are currently sitting to the south of a low pressure area, which is moving East. Unfortunately,it is travelling faster than us, in the next 24 hours it is going to drop us and leave us in very light wind for half a day or so, and by 0200 on 23rd May, we could be motoring for a while. When the wind does fill in by tomorrow afternoon, it is likely to E to NE ending us close hauled o a SE course port tack. Eventually, by Tuesday night the wind is predicted to veer SE to S and put is on starboard tack in the right direction again.

A nasty little low is predicted to form South East of us during Tuesday morning moving north bring with it an dorce 7 wind from the East, exactly where we want to go, so we will need to keep an eye on this over the next 48 hours. It may drive us to a more northerly strategy.

We are seeing more and more shearwaters and I have finally taken the trouble to look them up in my bird book. Apparently they breed in South America, particularly Brazil during the southern summer. In May and June they migrate North to feed on the Grand Banks and then in July and August they move over to Europe, where we have seen them in previous years in Scotland. In the Autumn they start making their way back South again to complete their circuit. One has adopted our boat temporarily. It circles the boat once or twice and then skims away to quarter the seas, skimming only inches above the waves. You think it has gone and then suddenly it appears above a wave, circuits the boat once more before going off on another foray. Then it is joined by one, two, three more  - marvellous.