Fwd: Day 3: out of sight of land

S/Y Cherish
Peter Gray
Fri 2 Dec 2016 18:10

Most of the crew report vivid dreams, trying to make sense of our cacooned little world and the strange bangs and thumps. It takes time to know our way round the boat and where the nearest hand hold is to counter the pitches and rolls. We pick up bruises as we rock around and it is exhausting. We all sleep much of the time off watch as we come to terms with the constant deep muscle adjustment that our bodies make to keep upright. Making a cup of tea can take half an hour; one hand for the boat, one to steady self. Sven fitted a set of fiddles or fids on the oven  hob which hold the pans stable. The cooker itself swings on a hinge so that it stays upright with the swing of the boat. The strange thing is the ocean doesn’t seem that big. We can only ever see to the horizon where the sky curves down to meet the sea so we exist in a dome. One dome follows on from the last like moving across a giant sheet of  bubble wrap.

Doing well - no engine (other than to charge batteries and make water) so far and nearly 400 nautical miles (440 land miles) covered since departure. A word on electricity and water: we carry 4 big batteries (domestic batteries - there is a separate battery to start the engine)  to provide power for lights, radio, navigation instruments etc. Although we have solar panels, these will only just keep pace with demand during the day, so after a day or at most two, we need to charge up the domestic batteries every day or two. Ordinarily, we would use the generator, but this - as previously mentioned - is broken,so we have to use the main engine. The portable generator on the foredeck is for the nightmare scenario where the main engine fails.

As regards water, we are carrying 840 litres (nearly a tonne!) or fresh water in two tanks, plus emergency drinking water is 5 litre bottles. We could do the whole trip with this lot,but we would get pretty smelly, even with sea showers (a fresh water shower where you only use about two litres, instead of the 50 or so you might use at home). So we have a machine that converts sea water into drinkable but not very tasty fresh water. This requires a lot of power, though. So the plan is to gradually run down the tank water whilst reducing  the rate we use by making water, so that people can shower not too infrequently.