ETA

“GRINDING”, “EASING”, “PORT”, “STARBOARD”, “2, 6, HEAVE”, “MAST”, “BOW”; The last few days have been a hive of activity and noise on the boat. We have had dramatic wind shifts in both direction and speed. One minute the wind is from behind blowing 12 knots and we are prepping for a spinnaker hoist, the next it is side on 30 knots and we are grateful the anti-wrap net got caught on the mast light fitting and that we had to untangle some halyards meaning that we didn’t get round to hoisting the spinnaker, so, when we crash jibbed with the boom swinging dangerously across the deck and the boat heeling the wrong way, we only had the white sails to worry about and not a spinnaker that was blown to smithereens and us along with it! Don’t fear though, two things remain constant; it’s still wet and grey every day and I still can’t wait to get to San Fran!

I have reached a new level of wet, I now have wet midlayers, and wet feet. My boots gave up being waterproof a while ago and my sealskin sox have had it now too and to add to the joy, for some reason my right foot seems to be wetter than my left! My bunk is surrounded by dripping kit and my oilies are a wet puddle to step into every watch. I’ve gone through optimism, to grumpy, to tired, irritable and today a new low of ‘must not cry’ (it’s ok Dad, I didn’t cry, I will survive, returning to caffeinated coffee is helping me through). I continue to marvel at the constant greyness and lack of sunshine, not one day of sun since we left China, I know it is still up there as we do get daylight but I can say for certain that any tan I may have acquired on the way to Singapore has well and truly disappeared. Also to add to the list of woes; being monumentally tired (yes, Dad, hotel in San Fran is booked) and aching (massage to be booked!) from so much winching and standing (trying not to spend my life with a wet ass). Would I do this again? Right now, no way. I am questioning my sanity of even wanting to do it in the first place. I can only hope that, like a good hill walk in the rain, where the pint in the pub afterwards makes it worth the effort, I will both enjoy a good glass of local wine in San Fran and have been shaped for the better by such a tough experience! But right now though, I’d swap this for a static bed with a feather duvet and keeping my flawed character thank you very much.

ETA fluctuates depending on the wind strength. When it’s blowing a hoolie, we have an ETA of 1st April. Right now as we bob around in 5 knots, our ETA is 6th April! With 509.3 miles to go, my best guess is the 2nd and probably in 8th place.

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8 Responses to ETA

  1. TT says:

    Keep thinking of the endless hot showers, cold cold wine, sleep and fun on dry land! Hugs to you all……..TT x

  2. alysoun says:

    Stay safe, you’re doing a grand job and all your friends sure as heck knew you were a total nutcase for taking this on. Be brave, there’ll be lots of laughs to be had (later). Enjoy wrinkly fingers n toes. xxx

  3. Simon Johnson says:

    Women Up I have loved reading about your journey and really am envious although I understand very wet is very uncomfortable
    Kind regards

    Simon

    PS Think of the wine, feet up. saunas, hot tub, good food etc. etc.

  4. Sal says:

    You were nearly right 1st April and 8th place. And not an April Fool. Chin up chuck were are all rooting for you …. although I’m not sure that helps much when you are cold, wet and tired.

  5. chris cowen says:

    Hang on in there girl, you have done so well. We are all behind you. Checking in every day.
    Take care. x

  6. Wendy wing says:

    Keep smiling it will get better. Hopefully drier !

  7. David says:

    I’m in Rhu Marina with my all gals crew who have just mutinied. Yes it’s cold,grey, damp but I only wanted to toddle 5 miles across the Clyde to new Marina at Greenock. I retorted by reading out your latest blog and new levels of wet to shame them into action – but to no avail. Keep going and keep blog coming, will make basis of great book when it’s all over. Take care from Cockburn clan.

  8. Elaine says:

    Hi Lesley,

    Your namesake, Elaine Roberts here. Isn’t it great that Julia made the name fashionable?

    Anyway, I have just found your blog and am loving it. I am planning to be on 13/14 and reading your blog is reigniting my appetite. Look forward to following you to the finish line and maybe meeting you at the party. Good luck for panama!

    Elaine

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