Light winds and a feeling of helplessness frustrate Ellen MacArthur. Read her daily log from Kingfisher2
Light winds and a feeling of helplessness frustrate Ellen MacArthur as she writes in her daily log:
“As I sit here typing there is a reflection shining through the nav station hatch on the dark water outisde… The moon seems as if it’s blazing out – lighting up the sky and our still silent world… There’s a funny feeling on a boat like KINGFISHER2, a feeling of complete silence when you’re sailing slowly. You get used to the rush of water powering past the hulls. It’s normally quite hard to hear what is going on, I suppose like having a conversation at the base of the Niagara Falls. Tonight the sound is more akin to the noise of a bubbling burn than a giant waterfall as we trickle through the water.
Sittting outisde I look up in wonder and frustration at the sky. The weather has not been on our side. It has chosen to test us, to push us hard – though this time so far not with gales and storms, but with nothing. I remember my own words – which right now ring out loud in my head: “What is hard about a record attempt is that it’s completely dependant on the weather – unlike a race where you are in the same weather as your competitors…” And I was right – there is no way we could have matched other record attempts at this stage when we have had so little wind.
Life on board is becoming more regular as I spend half an hour to an hour on deck at each watch change. I encouraged myself to do that, and it’s important. I feel happier chatting to the guys, and it’s uplifting to be around their fantastic humour. Despite the days of heat and frustration they are driving hard, and for the most part, smiling about it. There is nothing we could have done about this weather situation, there is little we could have predicted. Each change in the weather, and however microscopic, seems to be have been for the worse… It must be nigh on time for our luck to change… I’ve just been studying a satellite picture, and it shows some tiny cloud bands depicting the outer limits of our windless hole. It’s a tiny fragment of information – but real information and not a prediction. The wind has risen to 9 knots – and from the NNE… For the hundredth time today I wonder – is this our ticket out of here?”