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September 12, 2017

Today’s blog is being written on the bridge, in…. (“Will duty watch please go and brace the main yards round?”). Fifteen minutes later, and with the four yards on the main mast now eased out on the port side and sweated in on starboard, the blog can continue. In bright sunshine with blue sea and sky, all square sails set, and the engines blessedly turned off. We are making five knots towards the North East and hoping the wind does not drop with the sun like it did yesterday. Monday saw the sails set only to be taken in again and the engines resumed. Our peaceful 8pm until midnight watch revealed a sky filled with stars, while a stunning red moon climbed out of the sea ahead of us, crowned by the Pleiades. We continued to see whale spouts, as we have for most of the voyage, but there are no more flying fish and only the occasional Shearwater skimming the wave tops.

The Murder game has been officially wound up. The joint winners were Simon the cook (nobody was daft enough to upset the cook), Penny the Boatswain’s mate, and Arthur (from Port Forward Watch of course). We are promised a new entertainment tomorrow.

Boatswain Alex gave a talk on basic knots, and murmurs of “round the tree and back down the hole” can be heard from all over the ship.

Linnea put herself back in the limelight after her recent amazing talk on “Climate Change and the Reformation”, by celebrating her birthday today. As is now our custom we came together at the main mast to sing Happy Birthday and demolish the cake freshly baked by Simon. So fresh, in fact, that the warm chocolate topping was seen to be flowing gently back and forth as the ship rolled. Pieces from the leeward side of the tin had many more calories than the rest.

Our watch had laundry today. Most have learned from last time and made an accurate note of what we put in, as after drying it all goes into a communal collection basket. There has been much speculation about whose underpants Frankie will “borrow”, after her name tag was found in David’s after the last laundry.

Today’s talk was given by our merchant navy cadets, Arthur, Roman, Ollie, George and Alex, on the subject “What is a cadet?” they have chosen a fascinating career, whether in sail or on super-yachts, and now at least we know what they are doing on this voyage.

Forward Port:  Arthur, Chris, David, Frankie, George, Jon, Paul, Philippa

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