19 Jan, 06 – 21:26
I know they must be sorely disappointed over being out of the race and losing their boat, not to mention traumatised by spending a night clinging to the upturned hull, but I can’t help being just a bit envious of Emily and Sarah of American Fire. They’ve really lucked out in being picked up by the Stavros S Niarchos.
This is one of the Tall Ships, the magnificent old-fashioned sailing ships crewed by novices. I went with the Juno crew on a guided tour of the Stavros before our departure from Portsmouth. Wow.
Apart from the obvious attraction of a proper ship in full sail, the Stavros also has comfy bunks, proper showers, and a professional grade galley serving HOT FOOD! I bet they have toast and everything – buttered toast being today’s #1 food craving.
‘And would Madam like anything with her toast?’
‘Well, now you mention it, how about a large dollop of soft-scrambled free range eggs, two rashers of crisp-grilled organic bacon, a pile of wild mushrooms fried in butter, and two grilled tomatoes. And a mug of Typhoo tea with proper fresh milk. Please.’
Sorry – will have to stop now. Am drooling uncontrollably all over my iPaq. I promise, when I get back to dry land, I will never take good food for granted ever again.
Slow progress today. My patched-up oars are heavy and unbalanced – it must be akin to wearing callipers for walking – and my wrenched shoulder is still troublesome. The wind has dropped, and so has my speed. It could be a while yet before I get my toast.
Texts: thank you to Nathan in Richmond, Tim Ratbag (groan!), Greg Danforth (hope to see you in AZ later this year), Bri (xx), Mar (besos y abrazos!), J-F, DB, John T (good guess re North America trip, on right lines but wrong song and wrong food), whoever it was who told me about Moveahead – unsigned, but thanks for the update, AJ, Steve @ COTB, Sam K (torturing me with talk of drinks, dinner and company!), Gwenaelle & Hayden, Karen Luscombe (no raindrops today, but now cursed with that song, thank you very much!), Bob (what’s an attractive girl like me doing rowing across the pond? Getting away from men like you!).
For GPS position, race position and miles from La Gomera, see http://www.atlanticrowingrace.co.uk
Wind: E, 12-15 knots (estimate)
Weather: cloud and sunshine, showers
Sea state: moderate
Hours rowing: 10, plus lots of pumping out of lockers