The cloud cover and increased wind speed provides a certain amount of respite for Dee Caffari 27/4/06
Date26 April at 2337
PositionN 1° 41′ / W 22° 7′
You can probably see from my progress over the last 24 hours that life hasn’ t been exactly going to plan. I have been plagued by sailing in an area with little to no wind. The difference with today over the last few days is that there has been loads of cloud around. This has been great in blocking the fierce heat of the sun but tricky when trying to sail. I tried to go in search of the clouds as they would not only cool me down with the rain but were proving to hold some wind either at the edges or in the rain downpour that accompanied them. This in itself was too complex as surrounding each cloud was no wind, making moving difficult, so Aviva and I waited for the clouds to reach us.
The reality of this was that we went from 2 knots of breeze to 20 knots of breeze, from 2 knots of boat speed to 8 knots of boat speed and from scorching heat to torrential downpour on regular occasions throughout the day and tonight is proving to be the same. Frustrating is an understatement, but I just keep reminding myself that at the end of the day I have managed to keep my 42 tonne Aviva moving despite finding ourselves in no wind periodically. Each mile is a mile closer to home and fortunately for once we have a favourable current taking us northwest that also helps.
So apart from changing sails, and getting wet throughout the day very little has taken place. However, I did realise that just over three weeks ago I was just leaving the Southern Ocean. That feels an absolute eternity ago already. I was shocked that the cold, the storms and the ice all seem so remote to me after such little time. I actually feel as if I have been reading a book about a girl sailing through the Southern Ocean. She had some pretty horrific conditions and all sorts of challenges along the way. Anyway, she made it and sailed away into warmer waters. I closed the cover when I finished the book, it was a good adventure and I felt as if I had almost been there myself. It is difficult for me to realise that it was actually me and it was very real.
My reality now is to keep inching Aviva along in hope that we soon reach more established north easterly winds to carry us north up the Atlantic and closer to home. I guess I am making the guesses of when I am going to cross my outbound track pretty difficult. I have changed charts again today and I am actually back on a chart that has my plots on from when I was sailing southbound and even I was struggling to imagine where I would be crossing my track, so good luck!
Dee & Aviva