Sam Goodchild on the GOR: Front passes us

Sam Goodchild on the GOR: Front passes us

Monday December 12 2011 Author: goodchild.sam Location: none selected

The front thats been tormenting us for the past 4 days, finally passed over us at daybreak this morning. Thankfully it wasnt too ferocious, the wind dropped, turned thorugh 100degress and picked back up again. We are now back in high speed reaching conditions heading south with a 35mile lead over BSL just to our west. Thankfully we have managed to shake off Campagne de France for the time being but, with 4000 miles still to go, we expect them to be back.

As the front came over, the temperature dropped from really cold (but bareable) to bloody freezing, so now time on deck is kept to a minimum. With a constant flow of water still coming across the deck any bit of skin not covered up with pretty quickly becomes painful. Alternatively, hiding down below with the engine on while the autopilot does our job for us is a little too irresponsible.

Onboard, my vegetarian ways are becoming a little bit worryingly close to the norm. My attempt to convert Conrad has pittered out in failure and I just get a little enjoy from the occasional biltong and re-hydrated bit of meat. The occasional email from friends mentions the thought of steaks and hamburgers is more like torture than ever before.

With the high humidity and low temperature we are learning new ways of keeping warm and dry. We have not got a lot of diesel as our primary source of power is from the hydrogenerator but, when we do turn it on it is like a godsend. We also have a breathable sleeping bag which means, if you tuck a damp bit of clothing in there with you, such as socks or hats, after a couple hours sleeping they dry them selves out. This was a wonderful discovery until you get a little too enthusiastic and just wake up wetter and colder.

Having never met each other before, we have also been learning a bit about each other too, one of the more entertaining traits of Conrad is his ability to sleep talk. I have occasionally had conversations with him, of no relevance nor making any sense, where I go about getting him as frustrated as possible so, he swears at me and falls back asleep. Then an hour later, once his watch is done....he is oblivious to the whole thing. Once your at sea for two weeks its the little things that entertain us.

Other than that, we are still having problems with our chafing halyard and taking new measures to try and prevent it from happening again, unfortuantely these all involve a couple trips up the rig, with the wind, waves and temperature, these are never pleasant and often involve a few hours mental prepartion before being flung around like a rag doll a the top of the mast for 30minutes, normally not going in the right direction either. Still we wil persevere...

All for now from Sam aboard Cessna Citation with 4002miles to go.

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