Challenger 17th August

Red Watch on mother again,  Just as dinner was being cooked, we got the shout we have all been waiting for.  “Every one on deck! We’re crossing the Equator!!” and almost by magic, Neptune appeared on our deck (apparently it is traditional to have someone dress as Neptune, as the RAF and Navy also seemed to have a Neptune on their decks). Tony our ‘Captain’ approached Neptune and asked for safe passage and good luck for the whole crew.  Neptune demanded everyone must give one item to the sea in return for his blessings.  Amazingly quite a few of the crew offered cigarettes. The most strange was a head torch and a “Happy Cherry Haribo”.  In return we had to take a punishment. We had to eat an Olive and a spoon of Caviar.  It was amazing how many people were ‘yacking’ after this little concoction. After the final crew member had paid his/her respects, Neptune went below decks and amazingly Gurnos then appeared. Having sailed across the line before, he did not need to pay his penance again.  Mmmm that Santa thing comes to mind.

After all the fun we served dinner. Kiwi showed us he isn’t just an expert at keeping this boat floating and working, but he can cook a mean Chicken Fajita.   After the other watch’s attempts at making bread, we had our 2nd attempt and maybe I’m biased as I made it but the white bread was a great success, however I’m still not too happy with the brown. It was more like a Rotti than a roll.

Chris volunteered his services to visit the top of the mast and make some running repairs to the windyometer. He did manage to get it working even if the windyometer is now held on with string and tape. Time will tell how long the repairs last and if another lucky individual will get to sample the 25metre delights of a mast climb in the mid-atlantic.  He seemed to cope with the experience anyway and didn’t have quite as much adrenalin running down his leg as Pete the Mate did during his stint up the mast.

Spirits are slightly lifted today and hoping the Groundhog day has passed. “Days to do are getting few”.

Discoverer Day 15 18th August

The day started off well with the three yachts setting a waypoint and meeting together. The generator on the navy yacht has packed in so we were required to send off their blogs from our boat. The issue of course was how to transfer their blogs onto our boat in mid-atlantic – the procedure was planned and they  came downwind to us and lobbed the memory stick, which was wrapped in a waterproof container and weighted down with an orange from the bow to our stern in what turned out to be quite a daring manoeuvre with a lot of skill required!

Later on was what we had all been waiting for – the equator crossing! For this our skipper dressed up valiantly as Neptune “the God of the Seas” (photos to follow) which caused amusement throughout the crew who were armed to the teeth with their cameras. We toasted Neptune with a shot of Rum as well as being sprinkled with flour before sailing past both Adventure and Challenger to give our best wishes. We soon settled back down into our sailing routine with all three yachts heading towards the wind with a healthy amount of breeze and a great sun-set! Red watch being off-watch were found snoozing and fast asleep after the rum (all be it a shot!)


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