Monday, July 09, 2007

Friday 6th July

At Sea

6 16.642 S
127 04.889 W (at Midnight)

At sun rise the sky turned blood red in colour to the East; it was spectacular but as the saying goes “sailor’s warning”. We wondered what the warning would be for, hopefully nothing too untoward. Fish patrol around the boat netted us 2 flying fish. The radio schedule at 07.00hrs showed that we had experienced a better night sailing than Y Not and JJ Moon and we had extended our lead over them. Timella had finally got some wind and had also had a decent night, though they are now more than 1000 miles behind us. Our day was very ordinary, we did the usual things like make water, cook, take turns in watching over George and read in the cockpit when we weren’t actively doing “chores”. For the better part of the day we had constant wind and made 6.5 knots speed all day. Sun set, much like the sun rise was spectacular; the sky to the West turned crimson around the cloud line – “sailors delight” – we could only hope so! We began the night watches with me going to bed first as usual, only to be woken up by Gerry yelling to get on deck at 21.30hrs. I scrambled into my track suit and rushed up on deck to find out what the problem was. Gerry had been trying to furl the jib in as the wind had began to get a bit too much and had found it wouldn’t furl away – oh no, not the same problem again! The first thing Gerry did was go below to dig out the 1000 candle torch, within seconds of him going down below there was a torrent of foul language, it turned out that the torch wasn’t charged after the last time he used it (way back when!) so back out to the cockpit he came with 2 smaller torches and he attached himself to the harness and the jack line and went out forward to see if he could identify the problem. Once up in the bow he yelled a me to let the rest of the jib out and then moments later to try and furl it away, it went away with no problem thank goodness. When he returned to the cockpit he said that the spinnaker halyard which is attached to the bow just in front of the jib was a bit loose and had somehow managed to wrap itself around the jib preventing the jib from furling away; once the halyard was free of the jib and tightened up furling the jib away was easy. I was very glad it was something that simple, we’ve had enough problems with the forestay already for this trip. I was about to return to bed when we noticed a glow on the horizon, we speculated as to whether it was another vessel or possibly one of the Atlas weather buoys that are at various intervals along the route; either way we were going to be watching the glow and avoiding hitting whatever it was. I returned to bed and the night watches continued.



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