17-04-2014 & 18-04-2014


Topsails set, course 320 degrees doing 5,7 knots close hauled
After leaving
the topsails on deck for over 24 hours, because of showers and unsteady wind,
the topsails are up again and they are pulling their weight!! We are now sailing
in the Northern Tradewinds that are blowing from the north east. We will be on
this course for another couple of days, until the wind turns to the east and
then we hit the band of westerlies more to the north.

Things on board
are back to normal again, after all the excitement of Neptune’s visit and
crossing the equator. We have already crossed the second degree into the north
and are clipping along nicely.18-04-2014
The haze that covert part of our world as we hit the doldrums and
the North Atlantic,has been lifting slowly. Today we had patches of bright blue
with small tradewind like clouds, where the sun came through and showed us the
deep  intens blue color of the ocean again. It is amazing to see how the world,
our small little world, has so many different faces. At the beginning of the
watch, the ocean can be a small puddle of water, with seemingly short waves and
a very dark blue color. With a thin cirrus like cloud covering the sun,
everything seems grey. Not the grey we experienced in the southern ocean, but a
warm almost orange grey. The sun is not really shining but you are still
squinting your eyes and if you do not put sun screen on, you still burn.. And
then two hours later, totally different sky, just some small clouds over head
and a few big cumulus nimbus clouds on the horizon, in this light everything is
bright, everything shines and if you do not ware your sunglasses, your eyes
could burn just of the sun reflecting on the bright blue ocean. And then at the
end of the watch, the sun has set, everything is dark and the stars are at their
station. Walking outside with your plate of food, it is a good thing that you
know your way around the ship blindfolded, because that is how much you can see!

Right now (00:30 board time) the moon is back out, the stars seem a
little less bright then at 19:00 but still they are there. The previous watch
said they had spotted dolphins, so we are the look out for them in the
phosphorescent ocean, now a deep dark blue with specs off algae in it.

We are sailing beautifully, although our course was somewhat
disappointing today, the north east wind  was a bit more northerly and pushed us
into the west. Our compass course seems fine, but over the ground, when the wind
is weak, it is very difficult to go where we want to go. This night watch the
wind has picked up again, hopefully this wind stays.

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