Visit from Charlie...
We've been at sea almost a week now but it feels as if I've always lived on this boat, it's amazing how quickly you can get used to somthing! We are well into our rhythm now with the rowing and sleeping pattern and general practicalities of life on board - Annie can make a cup of tea in only 10 minutes now! Both of us are already totally sick of freeze dried food though (it all has the taste and texture of soggy cardboard!), eating meals isn't something to look forward to - it's just something to be done, thank God for Christmas cake and flapjack then! Michy also gets an 8 out of 10 - points only being deducted for the fact that it needs to be supplied with a lock and key to stop Annie eating the whole lot!!!
We're still holding our own with the boys out here, rowing is quite tough at the moment as both the swell and the wind are against us and the boat feels really heavy - we're desperately trying to put some West in but the weather seems to have different ideas, we're ploughing on though and spirits are still high onboard. Both of us are really quite competitive so thoughts of beating boys and breaking records are extremely motivating and being out near the front is a huge psychological boost, there's now way we're losing this pack, we're staying with them to Antigua and hoping to use some ideal conditions at some point to put some of them behind us.
Yesterday we had a visit from Charlie, one of the solo racers. We saw him on the horizon but he was sleeping at the time, when he woke though he paddled over to see us (he has an extremely revolutionary boat and waS annoyingly quick in reaching us!) We had a great chat about life on board, how things were going, where all the other competitors were, weather, tactics etc etc. It was just as if we'd bumped into each other in the supermarket, it was only when I thought about it afterwards I realised what a funny situation it was, 2 ocean rowing boats chatting away in the middle of the Atlantic wearing nothing but their underwear! It was lovely to see Charlie and he was in fine spirits, must admit I take my hat off to the solo guys, that's a whole different ball game and they have my upmost respect.
He invited us over for supper at his, but sadly by that time we'd both disappeared over the horizon, so it will have to wait until another time!
We also had a visit from a cargo carrier laSt night, when I was rowing I saw his lights in the distance and it looked like we were potentially on a collision course, so we radioed him up. Despite us having AIS (a system where we appear on other boats GPSs and vice versa) he hadn't seen us, and couldn't at first see us after we'd given our position which was slightly alarming! When he did see us he seemed to find our boat funny but was very courteous and altered course to avoid us. Was a real lesson showing that we can't rely on technology and because we are so small and vulnerable out here we have to be 101% vigilant at all times regarding other traffic.
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