It’s 4am and we’re sitting in the chartroom with
yellow, orange, black and green screens blinking. It’s bright daylight already
and Tecla is happily cleaving her way along the 53 degrees South meridian, the
instruments tell us it is 16 days to the Horn. It has got warmer since yesterday
with the wind coming from the North West then West.  Our minds still haven’t
quite adapted to being down under and it is weird to think that North winds
bring warmer not colder weather. Mid morning we took the topsail down and gybed
then Gijs disappeared into the galley to bake bread and left us with
instructions to get the topsail ready for setting on the other tack. What ???
You should see the amount of ropes near the shrouds and mast! We had good fun
working things out for ourselves though the topsail halyard bend’s knot is still
defeating us!  There has been a lot of showering and hair washing in the
starboard tack cabins with the sails now on portside! We even did some laundry
and were able to spread a washing line on deck though the sun didn’t come out
and we had to bring the washing down in a hurry when it started to rain – our
cabin now looks like a right Chinese laundry.

In the afternoon as we, the
white watch aka the wildlife watch, were on duty ie utterly absorbed in a game
of charades with Sam (you get French, Flemish and English films and books titles
so it is rather mind boggling…), Jet spotted a huge whale blowing barely 20m
away from the ship!  It was so close we could see the ridges and lines on the
lower jaw! This made our day !

We’ve all settled in our little routine
now. The table get laid with delicious meals then cleared up as the boat is
rolling. We tend to slip into the same places now, some sitting at the little
table ensconsed in serious conversations and then us at the Zen Kitchen table
generally making fools of ourselves trying to avoid flying cutlery. Even filling
a glass with lemonade without spilling any has become an art! Our hands now
automatically hold onto our place as our body swings to keep up with the boat’s
motion. I wonder how long it will take us once we get ashore to let go of our
crockery while we are eating!

On deck we have also slotted into little
groups. Jan and Gareth are looking at pictures and hull drawings of old herring
fishing boat like Tecla, Herrki is singing the praise of Estonian islands,
Emmanuel and Kajo are hard at work taking photos, Emily and Richard are glued to
the TV watching yet another movie, Steph and I are giggling at everything and
nothing (we definitely don’t feel like grown women…) and Linda is impressing
us all by wanting to know everything!

That is it for today from the White
Watch! As Emily always says love to our family and friends! Virginia, Steph and

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