Location: 01 10.917N x 041 24.047W
Hello blog readers far and wide, I hope all’s well. The last few days have been characterized by a distinct lack of anything resembling wind as we make our way across the intertropical convergence zone. That’s where the South Easterly trade winds that we have been enjoying thus far in the trip converge with their opposite number in the North. This results in some pretty awesome skies, sunrises, and the elusive opportunity for an ocean swim, but also the need for a bit of motoring so as to hook into the North Easterly trades in a timely fashion. Today began with both watch teams one and two rolling their sleeves up to get all the useful sail area we have for this point of sail gainfully employed. Lilly and Kat took the reigns on this one, leading their watch teams to dacron shrouded greatness. Even in such light and tricky conditions, I am always impressed by the amount of power Argo’s rig can conjure up. Pulling 130 tonnes through the water is no mean feat. Though we continue to motor sail, for now, to stay abreast of all that we have to come later on down the line, the added nudge is noticeable and somewhat humbling even in such an innocuous setting like this.
Now, as I am sure you all realize by now, much of passage life rests heavily on the routines we put in place, be it what we do on watch, or how and when classes are run. Now not to sound like a horoscope in the `Sunday edition of your local paper, but I often think about how much this routine casts off one’s myopia with regards to the little things. By this, I mean anything from seeing a swallow 500nm away from land that comes and flies through the rigging for ten minutes, to someone offering you a spare spork at the end of the lunch line to make up for the use of cutlery in the preparation process. Today it was Mimi’s massive excitement at being handed a note telling her that if she wanted to include a stomach dissection of a Mahi-Mahi into her class, then there was one waiting on deck. (A decision met with considerable enthusiasm, particularly by Jett and Kat as they doggedly sought out its brain, but to no avail). This also made a cracking addition to Will F’s tacos for dinner, which were also met with considerable enthusiasm.
As of now, we are just under halfway from Noronha to Barbados. With a bit of luck, we should be starting to see some meaningful breeze (not as in the Bob Dylan – “the answer is blowin’ in the wind” variety either) by Sunday, which should provide us with some spectacular sailing for the rest of the way up to the Caribbean. It really is mad to think on how much we have done thus far (swimming with the largest fish in the ocean, two continents, the prime meridian, the equator, and 4743 NM to name but a few), and also that we still have another 45 days ahead of us. I’ve massively enjoyed every moment as part of this crew, and relish the thought of all that lays in store for Argo and her crew.