Day 17 - Are we nearly there yet?

Alistair Groom
Tue 11 Dec 2007 14:52

Well yes, with only 340 miles to go, which is exactly 2 days at our current speed, but no, we still have 340 miles to go.   Apart from the fact that the wind might die, with every mile and hour at sea, the risk of bits of the boat giving up the ghost increases.  Yesterday it was the Duogen, our very efficient and eco-friendly water/wind generator.  The thingy which connects the rotor to the generator fell off, so it is now hors de combat.  That means that we have to use our engine more (in neutral!!) for power generation.   The thing which takes most power is the autopilot, which steers considerably more accurately and in a more nuanced way than we can do manually, so it has been in operation 60/60/24/7 for the last 17 days, and is getting tired.  It evidences this by groaning noises, and by a clever trick of occasionally taking the boat off on a random course.  It only does this at night, in order to keep night-watch-keepers on their toes.


Today it has been the red knob which is meant to stick out (of the engine control).  It failed to perform.  However, Andrew has twiddled with the red knob and now it sticks out proudly again.


Fishing triumphs?  Er, no….nothing yet.  Brad has valiantly trailed the line out every day without success; last night the instant he put the line and hook away, a myopic flying fish whacked him from behind.


Clare has been practising for the beach, having now decided that we are likely to make it in time to get there, but she can’t manage the full 180 degree stretch.