Distance run in the last 24 hrs; 93NM
Average speed; 3.8KN
Weather; SE force 5, cloudy overcast sky with 2m sea swells
With the iron staysail having been started due to the SSE winds it is time to hand the square sails, all hands are called on deck to assist and those feeling well enough are sent up aloft to furl where some of the crew experience a hard rain fall from further up aloft. The plan is to use the iron staysail to get far enough South so that we can sail with SSE wind, which is due to remain until Friday. We keep the staysails set which help maintain a more comfortable motion.
The maintenance continues on the hammocks into the afternoon with the crew getting involved and learning about how to splice and create grommets. I have to give Neil and Dave a mention as they spent a good part of the day, giving their free time in assisting with the grommets and splicing.
Although it has been mainly overcast the last few days the skies cleared for a while last night showing several of the planets, Venus, Mars and Saturn and also the compilations of Libra, Virgo, Leo and Scorpio could be seen. It makes the watch much more enjoyable for those who are on at night, knowing you are out in the ocean away from land and light pollution with the universe buzzing above you, a real feeling of escapism.
The weather has completely changed from when we left Adelaide, it is now cloudier, stronger winds, higher sea swells, but the most dramatic change is the temperature. The day we left Adelaide it was over 37° and now we are at a much cooler 17°, less than half of what it was.
With the galley being the heart of the ship, Nigel and Fiona have one of the toughest jobs. They have to work in the extremist of conditions; when it is hot, double the temperature down in the galley, when it is cold and rough they have to be so careful where they place everything. The crew rely on their food as an energy source and something to look forward to when coming off a cold, wet watch, so it is such an unconscious morale booster. They have to carefully asses the weather conditions every day in order to provide the type of food that the crew are going to need. Not only do they produce cooked breakfast, cooked lunch and cooked dinner they also bake cakes and cookies for the two tea breaks during the day. Over the last 24 hours with the conditions being a bit more challenging we have to be grateful to the galley team providing us with amazing fresh, homemade soup and amazing date sticky toffee pudding. It isn’t just about the providing of the food but the quality is sensational and mouth-watering.
The morning brings us much of the same conditions with the iron staysails still required. With this in mind and the crew looking tired and fatigued, we just go about the usual routine of the morning meetings and happy hour. The rest of the morning is spent for most catching up on some lost zzz.