This leg so far has been quite a contrast to the others. So much so, that I feel like I’m on holiday. Instead of boiling seas, cold nights, taking drenching waves over the deck, howling winds and a hectic and tiring watch, we are sitting in the sunshine on beautiful calm seas with light breezes, all the hatches open for air, warm balmy nights with stars and hot, hot, days with suncream and less and less kit on (still decent though Daddykins!). Only 12 people on the boat also makes a massive difference. We have much more space, the conditions below deck are less hectic and everyone knows what they are doing and what is expected. Mother watch is a joy with 12 as things take so much less time and clearing up is so much easier, our pans are finally the right size, the colander can now hold all the contents required and the rice maker is happy with 12 portions (top tip, 20 peoples’ rice does not fit in one domestic rice maker, I speak from experience and never want to clear up the mess again!). I wish we could stay at this number for the rest of the race but sadly we are due to have large crews from China onwards so it will be back to hectic changeovers, massive meals, mountains of washing up and cramped living conditions.
Today really has been like being on holiday for me. I’ve been on mother watch. Here’s a brief summary of my day; 6am start to sort out breakfast. In the bearable first heat of the day it’s not too bad and as I said, clearing up with small numbers is not to onerous. Making the most of the cooler (well not inferno like!) part of the day I spent until 10.30am in the galley – 2 loaves of bread, curried rice, tuna nicoise pasta, potato salad and 2 sticky date cakes later I’d finished in enough time to get a bit of sunbathing in on deck before having to serve lunch. Lunch went well and as there was plenty left (and dinner was supposed to be mash and stew – a little hot for that!) everyone agreed to have the same again for dinner, so with the addition of a little chick pea, mint and feta salad, I was all sorted for dinner and able to spend the afternoon watching a movie and washing my hair – oh, it felt so decadent. It’s the first movie I’ve watched since being on the boat and I loved every minute of it. [The Hangover for those who would like to know and I can highly recommend it]. I even had time to start another film [Definitely, Maybe] which I am going to return to when I’ve finished this. It is lovely to get a bit of respite and to have that holiday feeling, I feel we definitely deserve it after how tough the last leg was.
So it’s back to the movies for me.