The sun's just gone down and we've suddenly got wind for the first time all
day - 12 knots! Well not so bad, the white A1 gennaker dragged us along at
a respectable speed (5 to 6.5knotts out 6 to 8 knotts of breeze) as long as
we kept the wind forward of the beam meaning we have been sailing west all
day. Wind now has swung to the north and is mostly keeping us moving at 7 -
8 knotts but the wind has lulls back down to 8 knotts reducing our speed
considerably. If only we can get a bit further south west we should get a
steady 15 to 25 knotts of breeze. Until then the gennaker will stay out
through the night with hopefully a vigilant crew that can take quick action
if the wind picks up lots.
Got caught out last night with a wind change and a sudden increase in wind
crew acting a bit slower than necessary. Richard was in bed but felt the
change and was on deck to sort things out. The wind went through a 180
degrees change in direction which led to a uncontroled gybe testing the new
boom. As we were sailing with the gennaker up at 60 degrees to the apparent
wind we did not have a boom break on but as the main sheet was reasonably
tight it was not so bad. As the gennaker had backed itself into the rig we
needed to gybe back, furl the gennaker and drop it into the sail locker.
Out came the gybe and we have nice sailing in the 15 to 20 knotts of
We are 400 nm (about 700km) directly east of Fraser island Qld and had
remarkable VHF radio reception hearing many of the VMR coastal patrol
stations along this section of the Australian coast. We had a chat on the
VHF to Bundaberg and it was like we were 10nm away. Normal reception range
is about 25nm.
It's amazing how busy and exhausting it is staring at the
ocean and the main all day and all night, and somehow we simply havent had
time to write the blog.
This is our 5th day of the crossing. We left Port Vila on Monday afternoon
after 4 days of sorting, cleaning, arguing, sweating, cooking and shopping
(Quicksilver bordies cost $7 here!), a few nice dinners at expat joints,
some truly horrendous laplap, and a yachty get-together at Sam's place on
the water. I got my hair braided and apparently look like a wombat.
Half moon is above our heads, stars are out, U2 crooning...life doesn't get
any better than this according to Richard. Kev wrecks the moment suggesting
that the company could be better. With that, we should probably introduce
Tom (aka Tom Cat): strapping 6ft 3 English lad. For some reason he's
hanging out in NZ???? "He won't set the world on fire, but he'll be there
to put it out". He's a lovely, sturdy type.
Christian (aka Gorgeous): he's our genius - he's actually a rocket
scientist!! From Belgium! Very cute accent. Spent the first 4 days puking
his head off and curled up on the deck in the foetal position...poor little
lad. We saw him for the first time today, he did a hilarious dance with the
broken toilet seat, then patched it up with expoxy fortified with smashed-up
coconut shell. Did a great job synchronising the navigation systems and
cooked some Belgium stoemp.
Stuart: (or Stu as he likes to be called) good humoured (though not as good
humoured as we need to be for
putting up with him), straight out of the hobbit - lythe, muscular, all over
the boat like a ferret in a frenzy. Had some dodgy sailing disaster with
his boat going to the bottom just south of where we are now only 4 months
ago. We've been
ripping the piss out of him about that ever since he told us. "When I first
met Stu, I thought he was a crazy Kiwi. I still think he's crazy" (Tom
Cat). Stu's more comfortable with a gun shotting something to eat than a
computer (which is why I'm
on blog again)...Stu's definately in IT denial. Skipper was initially in
two minds (bit supperstitious about the yacht he was on going to the
bottom), but Stu has pulled his weight and has endless energy. Unsure how
he will respond if he gets a bucket of water thrown over him.
Kevin (aka Sir): highly cynical Englishman with a heart of gold. He's got
more moles than Mick Jagger, loves his wife, dogs and teenage daughter (at
least as much as anyony can love their teenage daughter).
Stares wistfully out at sea with dreams of sailing into the sunset with his
wifey on his yacht, then falls asleep at the helm. He's got that very
funny, dry sense
of humour delivered in a great cockney accent that keeps us all in stitches.
We luv Kev!!
Krystina: Krytina is the only other girl on board, and is just lovely. She
is so bright and happy and laughs at absolutely anything. She's whipped up
some ripper meals and keeps the personal hygiene standards on board high.
She spearheaded a mass shower and shaving today, so after ponging pretty
badly for the last few days so we're all smelling sweet.
Richard and I are the only ones from the last crew. I'm sure the others
will write about us tomorrow!
Photos and more in the next day or so.
As Stu would say "fully sick bru" (bro to the rest of us)
Love from Moksha