We were well and truly dropped into the windless hole yesterday. The wind gilled around in a roughly North Easterly direction at about force 3, dropping to force 2 – absolutely hopeless. The engine went on at midday and stayed on until 6.00 in the evening. Azure seas again with associated activities; it could be worse.
The consequence is however, that we have executed a very serpentine course in an effort to make the most of what wind there is. Our 24 hour passage over the ground has only been 90 miles, and we are well south of our intended track. Overnight, however, the wind has picked up as predicted. We spent half the night on Port tack and are now close hauled on Starboard tack with the wind slowly clocking round to the South at a respectable force 5, bringing us back towards our track. In addition, we are surfing down some quite respectable waves due to a 4m swell.
We are no longer alone in our little world. We have seen three large ships over the last 24 hours, and there is another yacht about 3 miles downwind of us, apparently going in the same direction.
The strangest things happen at sea. A mallard floated past us this morning, bobbing along in the Atlantic swell. It was completely unmoved by our passing, and we think it must have been a plastic decoy mallard – maybe it’s floated down the St Lawrence Seaway and is condemned to circle the Atlantic for ever and ever!
Fishing continues to be a disappointment although there was a brief flurry of excitement yesterday morning when the line was first put out. There were three strikes, we lost two bait and the third fish came off. We must have been passing through a shoal of dorado and they must have been big ones to take the not inconsiderable bait that we put out.