We are now in that wonderful “sweet spot” of a passage where routine, comfort and relaxation have taken over. Those prone to seasickness have their sea legs, running jokes and pranks abound and everyone is in their own world of reading, sleeping, fishing, eating, listening to music or playing with their (wretched?) computers. There is no sense of “when do we get there”. In many ways, we are there…
Sans Souci is on a rhumb line course for Bermuda which now lies 530 miles ahead and we will be sipping Pina Colatas at the Bermuda Yacht Club within 3 days. She is running sweet and is perfect in every way. Once again, I am reminded of Jeff Leishman’s design genius and Ta Shing’s fine craftsmanship as the 5-year-old Sans Souci conquers this open ocean passage with ease.
Our gaggle of boats (6 of us) answered roll call this morning with extra gusto as I suspect the sense of well being has infected the entire fleet. Bob Rothman (the 7th of our group) continues on his own special course and is about 40 miles away. The only known mechanical problem is on Sea Fox. One of their stabilizer fins made “an expensive crunching noise”, so that fin was secured and they are running on one fin, which will still give adequate stabilization.
I spoke with Jim this morning by SSB and got fairly good reception on the 4 meg frequency. His “slower” group of 11 boats are all well and are now about 90 miles ahead of us. We are closing on them at about 1.5 knots, and will thus catch them in about 60 hours.
At this point, it is self evident that the entire group of 18 boats will arrive safely, on time, and together in Bermuda, and that the fundamental concept of NAR is sound. Hats off to the entire NAR planning committee and especially to Jim for making this event possible. Their hard work and attention to detail is paying off big time. I know that history is being made. Thanks also to the participants themselves who have invested their time, money and effort to be a part of this rally. Without them, there would be no rally.
The seas and wind have settled down and are about as good as you can expect on an open ocean passage. As we learned on the ATW (Across the World) in the Nordhavn 40, there is nearly always the “lumpiness” of multiple swell patterns present in open ocean. As long as they are allowed to soften in light wind conditions, the motion of the boat and the speeds are fine.
The sky is bright blue and is dotted with puffy clouds and the crystal clear water (15,000 ft. deep at this location) is a deep cobalt blue. The sun glistening off the deep blue sea is more beautiful than I can describe in words.
Chef Phil continues to be a joy. Last night’s dinner was halibut wrapped in fila dough (aka halibut “en croute”) and this morning was an especially delicious omelet with ham, bacon and cheese. Could someone check for me and see if a cholesterol reading of 756 is OK?
Position at 1:00PM EST May 19, 2004 30 00.2 N 74.51.9W For more NAR/Sans Souci news go to http://www.kensblog.com. This is a web site maintained by Sans Souci owner Ken Williams. Ken is keeping a daily log of the voyage and is also uploading photos.