A Day At Sea – No More, No Less

A Day At Sea – No More, No Less

Posted from Rosto Alto, Azores, Portugal.

19 May 2010 13:14:02 34:22.9N 062:03.5W

GPS Position: 34:22.9N 062:03.5W
Sea Miles (previous 24 Hours): 160nMs
Sea Miles to date: 1,240nMs
Present Course Over Ground: 074°M
Present Boat Speed 7.6kts
Average Boat Speed (previous 24 hours): 6.7kts
Average Boat Speed to date: 6.2kts
***Velocity Made Good (VMG) to date: 5.2kts ***
Estimated GPS Position in 24 hours time: 35:16N 059:12W
Sea State: Calm
Wind Speed and Direction: 13kts SSE
Barometric Pressure: 1016mB
(VMG – An accurate measure of the average velocity achieved to date along our chosen rhumb line from Antigua to Dartmouth, UK)

Every 2 hours during the day or every 1.5 hours at night someone is donning a life jacket and going on watch or removing a life jacket and going below to make a “brew” for those now on duty. Watch duties comprise keeping a lookout (important but not arduous, as average sightings are less than 1 vessel a day), trimming sails, checking the rig, steering (occasionally – as Leslie our autopilot does most of it – left hand down a bit Leslie!), cooking and cleaning. Such is the life of the Oboe crew. In fact, as I write, David has come back from a walk round the deck after checking the rig, Ryan is also on watch (head buried in a James Patterson, Master and Commander volume!), Maggie is asleep, Rob is in the shower and I am sitting here at the chart table (my office).

As hoped, the weather forecast was accurate and we are now enjoying southerly winds at last. This gives us our first opportunity to progress eastwards rather than northwards. I don’t know whether you have realised it but right now, 11 days into our journey we are marginally further west than when we started! Today will see that change. From now on the trick will be to try to ride the weather systems across, staying below them to avoid the strong winds at their centres.

A migrating Swallow hitched a ride on Oboe yesterday. We named him Phil. The poor little fellow was exhausted and soon after landing went below to the warmth, found a quiet little corner and tucked his head under his wing. We had no flies for him to eat. He rejected a cheese and tomato sandwich and a cup of coffee. Rob suggested Garibaldi biscuits (squashed fly biscuits, as they are better known) but he was not fooled. I’m afraid that when we last saw him he wasn’t looking too stable on the wing.

Nigel

Date: 19 May 2010

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