15:37.62N 040:03.04W Saturday 13th Dec

Excellence of Dart
Peter Coxon
Sat 13 Dec 2014 19:50

Another hot and tranquil day after a night with the gennaker up then an early morning watching and navigating around the first of the tropical squall clouds than tracked across the ocean flying roughly in the same direction as ourselves.

We were visited by a small pod of Atlantic Spinner dolphin who were elegant and friendly as they rode our bow wave for 10 minutes, leaping out of the water together and then as suddenly dashing off for fun elsewhere. It always seems that they are just enjoying themselves. There is a view that they are visiting to see if we have fish for them- if that is true then they clearly do not know us that well!

We are getting low on fresh meat so fish has been ordered but we are unsure when the delivery will be made. It is  assign of the times- poor and unreliable customer service. However skip tries each day despite some cynicism amongst the crew

Saw our first ship this morning, heading past us heading for the Caribbean and who knows may be the Panama canal. It was an unusual  huge cargo ship with a massive crane amidships- we wondered if it might be a military supply/ transfer ship, but may never know.

We have an estimate of 8+ days to go and are making slower progress than we would like and are being careful with our use of fuel. Due to break open the champagne some time tomorrow at half way and we have approx half the fuel left so  we are eking out every knot of wind under sail for as long as we can then motoring on, often through the night when the winds typically die down even more> we have not had more than 10K of wind for a few days and frequently no more than 7K which is not enough to maintain the required average speeds. Still hoping to arrive in time for the crew to fly home on the evening of the 22nd even if they won’t have quite so much time for the rum punches!

So we are hoping still for more breeze from the north east and higher sailing speeds.

All is well