FROM 1-23. Next landfall Tasmania

Oct 04, 2005 - 2315hrs UTC

02315rs 04 Oct 2005 UTC 28’27”S 022’19”W Ref 415

Where do I start? How do I keep this going for another 65 days? First – today had that element of magic that blasts away the awfulness of the last couple of weeks with radiance and warmth – bright, dampish sunshine, the old barge a clothes horse for every mouldy sock and festering shirt, for wet weather gear and the boot ferals, for, indeed, those delicate parts of the anatomy that tend themselves to fester when unable to hang out – as it were. I’m wearing dry party gear pants as I write – we need to wear them because the cockpit at night drips with Poseidon’s version of dew – similar to an English country version but in spades. The unimaginable bliss of dry party gear!

And the wind today – started from the east and backed all the way round to the north east and lifted us so that we are now pointing at our waypoint south of Cape Town. Perhaps jumping the gun – my ability to predict this stuff has been abysmal, so you’d be wise to bet against me – but the latest grib file that I have pulled in says it will continue to back to the NW and will blow for at least the next 3 or 4 days – that’s 500 miles down the track. Noice if I’m right. We will pass about 300 nm North of Tristan da Cunha. On which, I’ve been reminded that the entire population was evacuated to Calshot/Fawley in 1961 when the volcano blew and my family helped to get them all to church on Sundays. I was at Dartmouth, I think, so missed them, but many of those people must be back there now.

And we’ve been astonished, amazed, confounded, gobsmacked even, and in my own case a bit scared by the response to the YM and YW articles. So many of you have written to us and said nice things, told us about yourselves – thank you all. It seems that we have blown a few sparkles across some dusty dreams and perhaps ruffled some memories. I don’t think I can respond to you all – I’m sorry, but there just isn’t the capacity on this link, but I’ll do my best to do so generally.

Some specifics -

Marcus H, England:

I have a restaurant and would be grateful to know what you guys eat, normal conditions prevailing. I may put something on the menu Berrimilla style.

A standard Berrimilla breakfast, when we have the goodies, is a bacon sandwich, preferably on lightly fried bread, with lots of tabasco assisted on its way by a liberal Consultation. It works for lunch, dinner, night time snack or any old time really. Daily food this far out tends to be anything from a can or packet that goes with rice, pasta, cous cous and TVP (textured vegetable protein to you) and boosted by curry paste and more tabasco. I think your customers would depart in droves. But my all time favourite is lightly fried bread spread with Frank Coopers Oxord Thick Cut Marmelade. Beyond belief wonderful. Breadmaking is tricky when the Vogons are around – armpit flavoured and flat is the usual outcome – if they have really departed for a day or two, I might give it a go. Pete does the daily cooking for our one hot meal and I love him dearly for doing so. I’d generally settle for a can of beans with a spoon.

Paul R in Brunei:

So many thoughts occur to me as I read your logs. Lots to say but not sure how to condense it. Firstly, establishing comms with the outside world is a bit of a challenge here too! My connection has been very sick for a few days and painfully slow, sometimes refusing to download a single page, must be a fallen coconut tree somewhere. You’re having trouble sighting the southern cross & the Brunei authorities are having trouble sighting the moon for the start of rammadhan. They couldn’t find it last night, so we all had to go to work today!

No favourite parts of the log’s all good! I was wondering though how early entries compare with recent ones. Did you expect to be so popular when you started off? Did you start off writing for friends and relatives? Has your style changed now that you’re sailing superstars!! I’m also intrigued by the NASA references and I’ll have to look that up too!

You have picked up the vocab and idiom remarkably fast. We really did start this just to stay in touch with family and friends – seems the family has grown and grown and poor Stephen, who volunteered to run the website for us has copped a huge bucketful – Onya Steve, please can I have a roar of applause for the lad from all y’all? – and I don’t know about style changing – I think it has evolved into this mangled shorthand, but you are the better judge of all that. To pick up your ‘celestial bodies’ theme, tonight is one of those gigazillion starry nights – the Southern Cross is out there at last, Venus is magnificent with its huge reflected trail, Mars is a red beacon and the Milky Way is just as I described it once before, like a dolphin’s phosphorescent trail across the universe. I think Douglas Adams said it better, though.

And on themes, Baldy (Simon? I hope not Helene) you might be interested to delve way back into the logs – I think before New Zealand to where I asked the then very small group of punters why the sun seemed to set to the south of us. I got several

interesting replies, including one from a friend, also a B747 driver, but with Qantas, who took one from – I think – Buenos Aires or Rio across the Antarctic to Auckland. Not your normal Qantas route – I expect he just got lost, but his observations about the

sun were fascinating. Up there over the Canadian wastes must be similar – I’ve done Seattle – London by BA but it’s not the same when you can’t see out of the front.

Bring on the goat – this is getting to be too long.

Comments are closed.