Greetings from the Good Ship Tenacious at 37 degrees 40.7’ North and 34 degrees 20.9 minutes West.

We have been sailing along quite nicely, now over 2/3 the way to Horta, our mid-voyage stop, in the Azores. The last few days have consisted of much sail trimming and adjusting of the yards so that we can make the best of the canvas we’ve got now that wind in a useful direction has finally arrived. This morning we even set the Spanker – the furthest aft sail we’ve got. It’s a good driving sail but not used very often, so we were pretty excited to set it this morning.

Yesterday morning during sail setting, Captain Darren let 3rd mate Rory play around with changing the direction we were sailing in as we watched the instruments on the bridge. It was a neat experience as we could all see the effect different wind directions had on the ship’s speed and movement.

Earlier this week, we had our egg drop competition. Each watch (and a team of bosun’s mates) were tasked with designing and building a vessel out of biodegradable materials to ensure an egg thrown down to deck from the first platform of the foremast would survive the drop. Teams were given points for an intact egg, as well as distance thrown, team costumes, and a story and presentation to go with it.

The results were… colourful, to say the least. Our watch went with a pirate theme, with John dressing up as our damsel who fled up the mast, complete with a brightly-coloured feather boa hat and a pink tutu under his climbing harness. Everyone went all out. Forward Port gave us a sing-along musical number, and Kev in Forward Starboard dressed up as a chicken. The bosun’s mates won first place; they were dressed up as very adorable mice and they had made a very elaborate helicopter to carry their egg missile. We came in first place of the watches with our rocket design. All of the eggs made it through [mostly] unscathed, and to prove no one had cheated with hard-boiled eggs, Bosun Stu broke each one over that watch-leader’s head.

Besides sail handling and egg dropping, we’ve also kept busy listening to various members of crew give talks on topics of their choosing. Watch-leader Mike did a talk on researching his family history, Amy did one on ballet history, and John did one this morning on bats, to name a few. It’s a good way to pass the time and an opportunity to learn about topics we wouldn’t get to otherwise.

We hope our loved ones at home are keeping well.

Aft Starboard

Bridget, Roly, Kate, Amy, Daryl, John, Fran, and Peter