I think today I’ll keep this blog short because it’s very, very difficult to write at 32 knts. So here’s the run down in order of what fans we have out there:
Firstly you hardcore sailing buffs: This is the Volvo Ocean Race and I see now why they take a good break between races. Conditions like today’s both break you and make you. I have watched this race for so many years now - probably since I was eight - and I envied those guys, watching as the walls of water blasted across the decks thinking “this is so damn cool, I wish I could have a go”. Well here I am, writing from the thick of it. The new 65s are more comparable to submarines; in fact today we were probably sailing faster under the waves than over. It’s so wet and the video or photos don’t do it justice. I guess it will remain an experience-best-left-to-first hand event. Seriously, we are absolutely sending the hell out of it, we had an A3 up, J2 and one reefed main. The speeds earlier where a consistent 25ktns in 22knts of wind, (a building swell) we then peeled to a MHO, J2 and a reefed main (a much longer swell and bigger sea state now) we regularly see the clocks hit 30+ boat speed. Today, I signed out the hatch to Nicolai what speed, and he handed a “three two” back, just being very casual that we were doing 32knts. All I can say to any under 30 out there, do whatever you need to do to get on this race - it’s a once in a life time experience.
To the families and friends and generally concerned individuals who think we are idiots; we are and we enjoy being idiots. We do it safely as always, spirits are super high, the adrenaline is pumping and while we just love it out here, we love being onshore with you also. You’ve got to understand, days like these are our days of youthful misadventure (for the older fellas anyway), and for the young, this is just the type of thing we do. We are all doing well - many thanks to all for sending us some love via email. The replies might be short on our end but receiving them is always a perk to our days. It’s not long now, hopefully we see you mid week.
For the birdwatchers out there (I wonder how many of my readers are birdwatchers?), there were sightings today: I counted two black-brown albatrosses, one grey-headed albatross, two sooty albatrosses, and what I think was an seriously overweight Giant Petrel. These albatrosses look like the size of a Mini Cooper and we still haven’t seen the Great Albatross with its 3.5m wingspan.
So folks, I managed more than I thought blogging wise, I’m off to bed for a couple of hours – Al’s Diner opens late on these cold nights to keep the customers happy.
Enjoy your Monday morning read and stop googling albatrosses, you’re meant to be working…