South Africa to the Caribbean – day 44
Our position at 10.00 (12.00 GMT) Sunday 5th March (just noticed my days of the week were out)was 01 55S
on a course of 300T with dark squally skies.
Our 24 hour run from 10.00 yesterday to 10.00 today was 135 miles. Average 5.6kts. We have 1747 miles to go to Barbados
After yesterdays squally start the rest of the day was spent sailing with our twizzle rig with a south east F3. As soon as the wind changes, and looks as though it will stay, we will takes the poles down and put up the main but at the moment the gribs are giving us yet another 24 hours.
There were further squalls in the evening with more wind but, thankfully, no thunder and lightening. Each time the wind would disappear for half an hour or so and our speed would be down to 3 – 4kts but we persevered and eventually it came back. Still no need to motor. We’ve only ran the engine for a total of 11 hours since leaving St Helena and that’s only been for charging the batteries. This morning, at almost the same time as yesterday, more black cloud rolled in from the north carrying torrential rain but this time the wind was blowing in the right direction so I didn’t have to run with it. I sat in the cockpit under the cover with my umbrella up to keep me from getting wet from the rain blowing in from behind. We are now officially in the doldrums aka ITCZ (inter tropical convergence zone).
I ran the net this morning with the rain pouring down outside and everyone seemed well. Ganash is through the ITCZ and reporting good NE trade winds on the other side, MariekeIII had a day of motoring so are about 60 miles ahead of us, Antares has left the Fernando islands and is about 60 miles behind us (not for long) and Norsa and Solstice had just arrived at the anchorage in the Fernando group so they have a few days off. We chose not to stop because it’s expensive but with the good weather forecast we have I think we would have kept going any way.
Last night I sat in the cockpit having my half way party for one (Bill has to go to bed early so I can get him up at 1am to take over the watch) with my glass of wine, just one, and my last Crunchie, saved for the occasion. I had my 70s disco music playing on my ipod, I had to be careful not to start singing and wake Bill up. In between squalls, the quarter moon peeked out from the clouds and sprinkled moon dust on the tops of the waves; at the same time a pod of dolphins came to visit, the phosphorescence made them look like torpedo’s darting back and forth under the boat. Magical times.
For dinner I cooked the steaks which we had with some frozen wedges baked in the oven. The steaks were lovely having come from Woolworths (think M&S) in South Africa but not the same without a nice salad.
All well on board. 🙂
The blog goes through to facebook but we can’t see facebook or your comments. I’ll catch up with them all in the Caribbean. If you wish to email us please use mdqf6 @ sailmail.com (take out the gaps) Stay safe everyone.