FROM 1-31. Sooo close to Hobart

Dec 06, 2005 - 2230hrs UTC│ More Salutes

2230hrs 06 Dec 2005 UTC 44’20”S 130’40”E Ref 626

We are getting soooo close to that 5th Cape. When we were surfing off a wave yesterday, the GPS actually had an ETE (est time elapsed) so under 100 hours at whatever speed we hit. Still no Derek at PentaComstat, but we can hear people talking to him on Ch 802 – not yet on 12 or 16 megs.

Told you my brain is a bit of a sludgepot – it has been coming up with lots more names that should have been in the penultimate salute – so we’re going to have a nice trilogy in five volume penultimate salute as a salute to Douglas Adams – how, for instance, could I overlook Simon at who wrote the Software on Board (SoB) navigation system for laptops that has taken us around the world and will give us heaps of extra information when we can download the files and analyse them. It’s a freebie and you can download it from the website – check it out – lovely package, Simon and I really like the AIS function. To make full use of AIS you need a DSC VHF and/or HF both of which we have but they are not essential – it is an early warning system without them if you use it correctly. (There are log entries about all of this back in August or just after we left Falmouth). I have some suggestions when I see you – for instance, an audible alarm when AIS gets a new contact?. Also a big lid dip David N who came down to Lymington for a day to help me sort some incompatibility problems between my laptop, the usb device and the AIS engine that works with SoB – thanks David – it’s still working!

To Brian Butler, who made the Cone of Silence heavy plastic curtain that protects the electronics from incoming spray when the companionway is open – good one Brian it has saved our goodies several times.

To the Royal Yacht Club of Tasmania (RYCT) who have offered us all sorts of help during our forthcoming very quick pitstop in Hobart – thanks. And to Bellerive YC across the Derwent, who looked after us so well before we left, about a century ago.

To Simon at CYC, for organising our S2H entry and offering us his HF and other goodies – there’ll be a Consultation when we see you, guys.

To the Chilean Navy met office in, I think, Valparaiso, for their lovely hand drawn isobaric weather charts with Altos and Bassos that came in on the fax and got us around the Horn. True works of art – I still have some of them in the laptop. And the Patagonian cruise netters – great bunch of people, friendly, helpful and hugely knowledgeable – you’ll hear them on 8164 @ 1200 UTC if you are going down there. To Derek P at Cable and Wireless in Port Stanley for sorting our satphone problem and stretching the rules to give me an account down there – thanks Derek – it has been our only link occasionally. To Tom and Vicki in Sunstone for some spot-on advice about the Fastnet, and to Malcolm & Hamish in Sarau for companionship and encouragement in the solitude of the Southern Ocean – and a nice bottle – along the way. There will surely be more.

Did anyone take up my offer of a smelly Berri T shirt with attendant blue tinted ferals as a token prize for the painting competition? I know of one set of paintings – if there are any more out there, please let us know in the next couple of weeks – for the Newbies, the competition was to paint, draw, produce in any medium a picture of anything that comes to mind when reading these logs and fax or scan us a copy to the website. I suggested the Albatross that I saw in one of the bigger storms. You still have time to get an entry in – roll up, roll up! The old farts’ decision final and unprotestable on this one! Might become the book cover…

And to all those who have written recently – sorry, I’ve been fiendishly busy attending to trivia – Phil C in Pleasanton, Ca, welcome to the old farts club. Graeme F – thanks and yes, we’ll probably need all the help we can get to turn around. Joppie, Caro, Kim, Izz- got yrs re duty, no probs, Paul thanks for good wishes, encouragement and humour. To George, for, it seems, using the powers of democracy on our behalf, John McC – we’ll be back at RANSA after the S2H – at CYC before. John M – I know your boat and, I think, some of its history. Good luck and if there’s anything we can help with, please let me know. I will send you my shore email and mobile number.

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