50:20.2N 8:53.4W

Sula Sula III
Wed 19 Jul 2023 12:14
15.00hrs. 18/07. 2 metre swell again.... Lovely and long; Sula wants to join in with the Dolphins and surf down the front of them. She just can't quite manage a whole ride, she gets going but then drops off the back. Still, we are managing 6.5-7knots in what most of the models say is the best of the breeze for the next 48hrs. Difficult to say when I might get in..... The last bit on Friday is very windless so it might be Saturday yet.
The wind is coming aft and will soon be only just North of West so set up the preventer, which meant a trip to the foredeck. I made up my mind before leaving the UK that when alone I wouldn't bother with lifelines and a lifejacket with crabs; my rational is that if I go over the side at anything more than 2 knots, there is no way I could get back on board so I would rather not be dragged along until I..... Anyway, in a bouncy sea, I am extremely careful getting about the boat, and I notice I become super-sensitive to the movements of the boat, and can time my moves with minimum risk. In that blow the other night I was clipped in when in the cockpit though!
20.00hrs. I can tell the water is getting shallower..... That swell has steepened up. Just heard from Margles, I have been banned from driving for 9 months...... I first got the notice of intended prosecution in November '22, but the ban doesn't start until 13th July. If I had gone to court in say December, I would only have a couple of months left on a nine month ban. So basically, I have to suffer because of the inefficiencies of the court system...... Do you think that will be a reasonable line to take at my appeal?
One last one pot cook-up; I'm going to make it mushroom based I think..... The Chinese really know how to dry mushrooms (and chillies for that matter); after 20mins in water, they are just like new! Good dried stuff and the Moong beans that Alice and Phil brought out with them have been the gastro highlights of this last trip. Avocados only finished a few days ago and I had my last apple this morning, yoghurt is still going! I have eaten well.
22.00hrs. one more degree of Easting and I can go into the Channel Approaches chart. Everything happens much faster when you get onto a larger scale chart..... And there is much more to think about, and many more decisions to be made.....sailing really is much easier once you are two or three hundred miles from land.
As it gets dark, I have the full main decision to make.... Last night I vowed I would never do it again, but making 6 knots in 11 apparent with full main and genoa it does seem silly to change anything......especially with the blue abyss chasing me. All the models say it will catch me at some point later tonight.
06.30hrs. so I updated the Grib about midnight, and the hole has gone! If I had done that before it got dark I would have probably reduced sail a bit, but as it happens the wind stayed constant throughout the small hours and we averaged nearly 7 knots. Now bright sunshine, hardly any sea, and 11-14 knots of breeze.
08.00hrs. The latest Grib is suggesting getting to the Scillies about 01.30 tomorrow morning. With dying wind of course.....so all the little avatar boats are ignoring the TSZ between Lands End and the Scillies, and are taking the inside route, but I am minded to go South of the Islands, as I will have only an hour or so of tide against then seven hours with to get past the Lizard. I might change my mind if we still have a decent breeze, but it is springs and Reeds points out that there are local rates of 4 knots between the Scillies and Lands End.....not attractive in 6 knots of wind (forecast).
12.00hrs. About 115 miles from Lands End. Progress has slowed again.... The models are all saying we should have 11-14 knots but the reality is 7 or 8.....I'm relaxed, there is plenty to do, and I will catch up on some sleep, as I won't get much later tonight. The last three hours has spoilt what would have been a good 24hrs.... Still managed 140 so no complaints!

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