For Berrimilla's first circumnavigation, the International Space Station
and the North West Passage, go to

Monday, November 16, 2009

It's all happening - except wind.

Hornswoggle - the HF radio just came on - must be something loose or a dry connection somewhere. I'll try to send this before it dies again. 1330/15th position 2309 02103. No send - no propagation.

The world hasn't stopped out there - our first ship for what seems weeks crossed astern of us at about 0730 - I turned on the VHF and he actually called us - a first, I think - to check whether all was well. I asked him to report seeing us and watched him sail away. bound from Africa to Buenos Aires. Another first - there are fish all around us - about 2 ft long, jumping occasionally and rather more oval in silhouette than small tuna. And a bird at sunrise - could have been our noddy of some days ago - small, brownish, flapping, wedge tail.

Heaps of mail - Steve back from the bush: Carol G - yep, I've read as much as I could stand but frankly, I think most of it is nonsense - the evidence just doesn't stand up and I remember being highly critical of some of his sources years ago at uni while doing a paper on Cheng Ho. Duyvendak for a start. Happy to take it all apart but not via iridium! Cheng Ho one of the people I would have liked to have been able to meet for dinner, Babelfish engaged for the translation. Fiona - so there really is a universe! Gerry & Donna - g'day! Carol R & the Richmond Julia Creek mob - g'day and glad Macca reaches even the Queensland boonies! Brian and Jen - Yay! Good to hear you are still with us. Sue - thanks for Groupama and news of UK, Norm, Blue nosed and in order out here! Agree re Mercator. Would love to know exactly what was destroyed in Lisbon in 1755 - someone will have been to MC first - and anyway, its significance is a human construct.

In case you are wondering, stuff-all wind here, big hole as predicted, hot, humid and not pleasant but we are carrying enough spare diesel to motor for a couple of days and we're giving ourselves a little carefully rationed slingshot of our own. Should get some wind off the top of the low tomorrow if we are far enough south.

Later - 1730/15th with Dr Grindy standing by to assist with any medical emergency - there's wind. And fog!! In the distance, cold air over warm ocean under biggish cloud - wooohooo! Right at this moment, 6 knots directly down the rhumb line. GC just a bit too tricky to play with for minimal gain. Won't last anyway and there's still that businesslike low below us that should be through tomorrow and a high behind it.