Fickle Fifties

Where Next?
Bob Williams
Mon 1 Feb 2010 16:48
Noon Position: 50 41.4 S 067 58.3 W
Course: Sou' sou' west Speed: 2.5 knots
Wind: Northwest F2 Light breeze
Weather: Sunny, mild
Day's run: 84 nm sailed and drifted, 57 nm made good.

Fickle winds continued overnight, not quite as bad as the previous 12 hours,
I only had to hand sail twice when becalmed in a tide induced short steep
sea. While drifting in the calm air (not sea) we were set backwards at the rate of two knots, always a little frustrating to see hard won miles slip away.
And then when we were sailing the conditions meant frequent visits topside
to check the wind, as at times it pretty well boxed the compass, I would go
and have a rest for 30 minutes and when I cam back on deck for a look around would find us going the wrong way, even more frustrating.

Still we are getting there. We are now in what have been called the furious
fifties, hopefully we will be able to avoid the worst of their fury. Despite
the frustration I think I prefer the less ominous fickle fifties. You have
got to be careful what you say and even think out here, it's hard not to be
a little superstitious when subject to the whims of powerful forces totally
outside one's control or influence.

All is well.

Bob Cat:

I hear that SY Jenny is now well ahead of us and we are unlikely to catch up
with her again. Interesting, I wonder how Adrian is going get the entrée to

Enjoyed a bit of sunshine in the cockpit this morning, though it seems
nothing is ever easy on a sailboat; first getting to the cockpit is a
challenge, it is quite a height and I have to do a chin up to get over the
companionway coaming, after 20 years of existence (or is it 21 now?) this
isn't so easy. And once into the cockpit we were leaning over quite a bit so
finding a patch of sunshine out of the wind where I can hang on securely
without threat of getting wet or falling over the side is the next problem.
The skipper thoughtfully brought a cushion up for me which helped a bit
(sometimes he manages to earn his keep) but after 20 minutes, nice and warm, I decided it was easier to snuggle up in the sea rug down below for a good
:. . Zzzzzzzz.