Fighting of the jellyfish and the jeebees

I've had a thought going through my mind for days now-a swim in the ocean but i knew it was too dangerous and that our captain would never have compromised us.But hey, our fishing line got caught around the propeller and so, who is going to jump in? Obviuos choice -the Nerd. as it would be part of the detox treatment [they say] while watching my teeth chattering just at the thought of the freezing sea.,, full of jellyfish and  if you look down -what do you see/ the abyss. Like looking into space but with no sun or stars However I do my job including brush ups with the jellyfish, climb back on board, check the GoPro video i took to show what i had done when -guess what? A large bit of rope, floating in hte ocean has got caught on the propeeler.So back goes yours truly -underwater holding my breath for 30 secs with a shrp but rusty knife to cut away the rope.The jellyfish get me aagain but hey, if I don't get a detox out of these experiences I never will!


eery view in the middle of the Atlantic

eery view in the middle of the Atlantic

We are now in the famous Azores' high pressure system.Total calm - flat sea with barely a wave. but we know that the storm is reaching us and than calm creates monsters! This 'oily slick' is making us nervous . At least when there is a storm we all have a job to do, make decisions and fight it. This way it  just drains our energies and the deck is so hot that it is really uncomfortable to walk on .We cannot motor or we risk running out of fuel which could be needed once we get closer to land. And we know that a lot of rain and wind will reach us-seems improbable and daunting while we bob around going nowehere.


Posizion: 30 54 N 47 17 W //                   Detox rating  23%  

too hot to handle

too hot to handle

Adding some of the ARC 2013 photos

These keep guess is that the Amsterdam trip was a reminder! Tks John!

So if you go back into the daily log  further down the blog you can see quite a few scenes from the crossing and there are some new ones  in Ocean -ARC Rally too.

Here is Nick, the last man in St Lucia who was able to collect the prize.

Here is Nick, the last man in St Lucia who was able to collect the prize.

Day 16 Dec 9th

Speed: 8.5 knots @ 248.93°

Position at: 09 Dec 2013 08:00 UTC

Lat/Lon: 18° 49.80 N, 052° 44.19 W

DTF: 586.2 NM

3rd in Racing B

After a long night of regular short watch changes - to ensure concentration at the helm in difficult sea conditions - the morning started with hoisting our "Mr Norris" spinnaker to maintain our fast boat speed and bring us to St Lucia that bit earlier. With winds anticipated of up to 28 knots, keeping the spinnaker up all day was ambitious, but as long as he was up, we knew we would be progressing as fast as was possible. As it happened, surfing down a 5m Atlantic swell, we kept that over-sized beast of a sail flying all day and hit almost 13 knots several times - fantastic! Our afternoon roller coaster ride ended when the wind and waves suddenly whipped up to throw us first into a Chinese Gybe and then a broach. It was a pretty dramatic moment - we could have lost the mast - but Milanto pulled through and all were hugely relieved.

It was all hands on deck to drop Mr Norris. Two crew members wrestled on the lurching foredeck to pull him down as the wind whipped around, forcing the sail up and away from the boat and almost taking the foredeck crew with it. Despite sailing gloves, the force was too great and rope burns were suffered by both before they got the better of him, bringing him to his knees and forcing him into his bag. That may be the last we see of Mr Norris. He has lost the affection of certain members of the crew who painfully wince at the mere mention of his name. Tonight we will race with 2 head sails and the main and with the wind speed increasing, its unlikley we could go any faster anyway.

With St Lucia now only 2 or so days away, some of the crew are getting itchy feet. We need to maintain concentration at this very important part of the challenge and idle talk about soft white linen sheets, cold beers, proper showers, seeing our better halves, being able to stand up or walk around without having to cling to the wall like bloody spiderman, more cold beers.....needs to be checked.

Eyes on the prize gentlemen. There is still 450 miles of challenging ocean to overcome.


Day 7 Nov 30th - under 2000 Nm. to go!

For regular readers of this column, apologies for the tardy posting of updates, but frankly it has difficult to sit down and write. we have now experienced 3 days and 3 nights of Gale force conditions. Gusts of up to 25 knots turned into wind speeds consistently in the mid 30's and gusts up to 40 knots The sea produced waves up to 4m high, and numerous back to back squalls threw bucket loads of rain down on us. Below deck is like being in a tumble drier - where nothing dries. As the boat pitches through 90 degrees getting into bed is a challenge, let alone staying in it or getting any sleep. On deck is like being in a washing machine, water constantly being thrown in your face after every spin, and in between, multiple sail changes working against the strong winds sapping energy.But its not all bad! We caught a fine fish day 5, a dorado, and today, day 7, Vale's birthday, we ate it, washed down with a fine bottle of , er, Cava.It made a fine luncheon for 6. Another triumph for Gianni's kitchen.

This morning we tacked and are now on direct route to St Lucia. We are hoping this run of very bad weather will be behind us by this evening and we will get the chance to do some housekeeping and sleeping......when we finally dry out.But spirits are high. Milanto takes everything thrown at her in her stride, carving her way through a tempestuous ocean, and we are in excellent hands with Vale as our skipper. Clearly he is a seasoned sea dog, with another year under his belt today.

John gets the big one!

John gets the big one!

Speed: 6.6 knots @ 283.22°

Position at: 30 Nov 2013 16:00 UTC

Lat/Lon: 24° 21.72 N, 028° 39.91 W

DTF: 1949.5 NM