Sir Robin's spirits rise as he crosses the Date Line and gives manicure advice to the ladies! 2/2/07

Log dateFriday 2 February 2007
PositionLat 48S Long 176.30W
Miles To Norfolk, USA10,931 nm
Distance In 24 Hours214.1 nm
Average Speed In 24 Hours8.92 knots

Saga Insurance crossed the International Date Line at 12:43 yesterday GMT, back in the western hemisphere. So I have an extra 1st February and go from being 12 hours ahead of the UK to 12 hours behind. Not the last boat to cross in the end not that it is important.

My strategy now without detailed weather info, is to try and keep between 46° and 52° south, with the highs to the north and the lows to the south and take the tack that gives the most easting. We have a wayline between 145° and 160° west along 52° south, which we have to be north of at some point. Both the other two have gone south so as they know what is happening with the weather, that appears to be the place to be. I gybed on what was, I thought, a wind shift, but it turned out to be temporary so I zig-zagged downwind for a bit. I was also concerned that the barometer was rising and maybe I was heading towards a ridge of high pressure.

The deep low that was heading our way has filled very slightly and headed SE, so we may not get as bad a blow as was predicted. Being south also happens to give a slightly shorter route as it is nearer to the great circle. I am lagging a bit against them at the moment but hoping for similar conditions so I can close up again. On a measurement to the middle of the way line, which is as good a way of judging things as there is, I am
207 miles behind Unai and 40 behind AGD at 00:44 this morning.

Lovely sailing day yesterday afternoon, boat going nicely, sunny, had my happy hour drink in the cockpit thinking of Pip and Sharpey’s vineyard and sitting outside with a glass or wine and BBQ, putting the world to rights – very relaxing.

One thing that does not survive sailing are finger nails. I tore off the end of my thumbnail, not back to the quick fortunately, trying to undo a knot. It is a nuisance as nails can help grip when dealing with rope. So Ladies, if your bloke asks you to go sailing, trim your nails beforehand or accept they might get ripped. Alternatively, if you like long finger nails, change your bloke!

Had a fry up last night – lovely. Potatoes, onions, a few slices of salami and garlic. Made a nice change from pot mess or freeze-dried and I don’t have to worry about being anti social out here on my own.