FROM 1-10. South Atlantic-Going up

Mar 25, 2005 - 2140hrs UTC

2140hrs 25 Mar 2005 UTC Map Ref 125

We are about 50 miles NE of Stanley, close to the edge of the continental shelf so still shallow and quite a big rolling swell from the west. So good to be moving again – it was difficult in the storms on the other side of the Horn even to think about sailing north, in sunshine. But here we are WooHOO. Very special feeling. We’ve been surrounded by masses of floating kelp in all shapes and wonderful wraiths and patterns. There is a long flat version with about the thickness and consistency of the conveyor belt you put your suitcase on at check in at an airport = rubbery, elastic and almost unbreakable. It has a sibling with frilly edges. There is another version with long stringy bits with bubbles and pointed ‘leaves’ – it looks like the sea monsters on old maps when you pass it, with a series if spiky bite protruding from the water. And another like one of those candlesticks with lots of arms. Some of the longer bits are perhaps 20 metres long and some of the clumps seem to have about the volume of a small house. Not good to get tangled in. We are trailing some stringy bubble bits from the skeg. Nuisance but not a show stopper. Hope the turbine doesn’t catch any. A few fishing boats on the horizon earlier but all now astern. We have to keep a constant lookout down here, although the jiggers are lit up likeTimes Squareat Christmas and easy to see at night.

We are both pretty tired – lots of hard work, some hard parties and still a damp boat. No real chance to unload and dry it out but all will improve with every mile in this direction.

Devoncroo – thanks for satphone message and John Clark, thanks for slab of The Doctor delivered in the nasties yesterday by Mike. Very kind thought. I have to absteem as am on antibiotics for vicious throat infection, but a good incentive towards recovery.

Brittany, I don’t know whether you want to get all these or just the relevant ones for Leroy – I will copy to you unless you tell me otherwise. Here’s hoping for a cloudless sky tomorrow night and Monday.

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