underway 34:31N 011:40W 110 deg 240 odd NM Porto Santo

Sue & Alan
Sat 5 Oct 2013 17:21
Some good sailing today and..............
Just after sending last entry this morning we'd just set the sails when squiddy scored first fish. Sails reduced, lifejacket on, leather gloves, gaff-hook, spear gun and big hammer at the ready and lets start slowly .............. it got away! Maybe just 30 minutes later another on the hook. This time, already prepared, gently-gently does it. Landed. Not the biggest fish in the ocean, a 2-man Tuna. Slightly over-did the nock on the head when an eye popped out (all of it!). De-scaled, head-off and gutted whilst still warm. Is pickling in clean seawater ready for Sue to dish-up this evening. The pasta bolanaise is for another night. In celebration, this mornings achievement - 'fresh (juvenile) 2-man tuna' will be enjoyed pan-fried in virgin olive oil alongside ribbons of courgette & garlick.
Spent rest of the morning - whisker-pole playtime. First attempt worked although not happy with the result. Time to sit and contemplate set-up options. Hit the bulls-eye just before noon when realized there's no need to attach outboard end at the bow - much easier to attach it amidships. This way I am able to do everything amidships and adjust whisker-pole lines once genoa is unfurled. It's a hit! (* * *). We've been sailing on poled-genoa and main with preventer at good speed for several hours. Wonderfully quiet achieving up to 8kn at times, mostly 5 - 7kn in relatively modest F3 winds broad-reaching. Forecasts indicate we can expect NE3 increasing NE4 for next couple of days so will keep same set-up overnight (12 hours complete darkness each night because there's no moon-light these days!). If any nasty windies gets up our set-up will allow me to reef the genoa (whilst covered by the main) before turning into wind to reef the main as well. I'm happy with that. Ah yes, nearly forgot. Couple of hours after landing the tuna the rod suddenly 'burst' into life again. Me thinks "By jove, squiddy's doing the biz today!". Slow the boat speed, all eye-popping tools at the ready (again)then brace me-self ready for another landing contest. Oops, this one's a bit bigger. The line seemed to slacken theb B***dy'ell it jumped out the water, me thinks "Keep a firm grip on the rod" and "a wopper!" then nothing. I brought the line in expecting to see a half-eaten squiddy or no squiddy at all. Still there though. Squiddy got away and continues to be our principal lure for now. Indeed swimming on end of our line at I plot! So, a very pleasant day will draw towards dusk with a tasty tea (dinner in posh places).
Good evening xxxxxxxxxxxxx

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