Day 5 (Tuesday 2nd December).
 
Wind picked up a bit in the morning, a fair bit of cloud around and quite muggy. Sailing along nicely albeit slowly with the main and Genoa. 
Highlights of day
Weather report.
Salade Nicoise for lunch.
Root veg soup and cheesy buns for dinner.
Talking on the radio to some rather jolly Canadians on ‘Windancer’ a boat in the Arc.
Lowlight of day
Slight problem with the water pump.
Weather forecast (we could be in for some squalls).
Daily average dropped off due to yesterdays lack of wind. 
90nm recorded for yesterday.

Day 6 (Wednesday 3rd December).
Slow start today as wind dropped off again. We put the cruising chute up and this had us chugging along nicely. Still very cloudy and muggy. Decided to leave the cruising chute up at night, wind dropped off so it was taken down in the wee hours. Read on to see why we were soooo glad it was!
Highlights of day
Weather report.
123nm yesterday.
Cruising chute up.
Saw Flipper and some of his chums.
Bacon baps for lunch.
Baked Aubergines for dinner.
Lowlight of day
Force 10 gale (yes you did read that right) all the sail down running under bare poles for a while (that means it’s bad!).
Damage to Wind generator
Navigation lights
Cape Verde flag (I know we should have taken it down) hanging on by a thread!

Day 7 (Thursday 4th December).
After the previous nights shenanigans, everyone was pretty exhausted and feeling a little bit low. The weather didn’t help it rained on and off for most of the day, which meant we couldn’t dry any of the clothes and coats. We had 3 reefs in the main and the storm gib up. Taking it in turns to sit up in the cockpit in coats in the rain, as wind is a bit flukey.
Highlights of day (a tricky one)
Vegetable soup
Bacon and cheese pasta for dinner
News from friends Peter and Raewin (also crossing Atlantic) they are fine and Pete is making raisin bread!
Lowlight of day
Genoa flapping like mad, part of it became unravelled in the gale it eventually ripped at 3.00am in the morning we were all up trying to get it sorted. Didn’t work!
Everyone tired and fed up of cold and rain.
96nm yesterday during gale had to sail downwind so were on our way to Africa!!

Day 8 (Friday 5th December).
The weather improved we were all up at 8.00am to try and sort out the darn Genoa that was flapping, twisted and torn. Plan A Skip to go up the mast and try and unravel it, this didn’t work. Plan B (just crazy enough to work). We unfurled the bottom half of the Genoa then went around in circles until the torn top half unfurled (Glad Windancer, weren’t around to see that). The damaged Number 1 Genoa was put away and replaced with the Number 2 Genoa as the wind had dropped the reefs were taken out of the main.
Highlights of day 
Working as a ‘Teamtastic team to get the Genoa sorted and all before breakfast!
The sun shining and being able to dry the wet clothes.
Omelettes for breakfast
Weather report
118nm yesterday.
Pizza and Apple fritata for dinner (Anne said we deserved a treat and she wasn’t wrong).
Lowlight of day
Skip had to get up couple of times on our night-watches as wind picked up again!

Day 9 (Saturday 6th December).
A cloudy start but the signs were good. Anne and myself helped the skip put the pole up for the Genoa, whilst one of the crew was still in bed (no change there then) Tramping along nicely with one reef in the main.
Highlights of day
125nm yesterday.
Caught another fish.
Had some nice wind.
Anne’s home/boatmade bread.
Less than 100 miles to halfway point.
Stargazing on nightwatch.
Lowlight of day
Moths in the veg!
Rain in the evening.
Lost the final and last fishing lure.

Day 10 (Sunday 7th December)
Woke up to find wind had shifted and the sun was shining! We had the main and Genoa up and were going well.
Highlights of day
Reached our 1000 mile mark
140nm yesterday.
Celebrated with a brunch of rose wine and pate on toasts
Deelish dinner of Tartiflette and Lemon meringue pie
Beautiful sunset
Stargazing on nightwatch
Lowlight of day
Problem with bilge pump so Miles and Paul spent a rather hot afternoon with their heads in it!

Day 11 (Monday 8th December)
Nice sunny day, we put the cruising chute up and this had us chugging along nicely. Took it in turns to do a bit of helming George isn’t one to complain but he needed a bit of a rest. In the afternoon Paul was was on the helm with the cruising chute and we were flying. He’d been helming for quite some time but we were egging him on not to stop (tired schmired, keep going man) as we were doing so well and were getting excited about our daily average going up.
Highlights of day
Scones in the afternoon.
Playing Scrabble whilst wind building and Paul helming. Knowing that at any minute it could all go a bit Pete Tong, but we were flying!
79.8nm in 12 hours.
Lowlight of day
Skip had to get up during Anne and my nightwatches as wind had increased and we needed to reef the main.

Day 12 (Tuesday 9th December)
Hot sunny day about 30 degrees not going as well as yesterday, had 2 reefs in the main and the Genoa out. Later the reefs came out and we poled out the Genoa.
Highlights of day
152nm yesterday.
Getting the weather report and mail from Peter and Raewin on ‘Saliander’
Lowlight of day/night
Squall hit just as the Fray Bentos pie was being served up.
On the nightwatch we Gybed and the preventer broke. All up to try and sort it.
Squalls on and off through the night.
This might of been the night Anne fell out of bed, she had a whopper bruise.

You really are hardcore, hats off to you mateys for sticking with it, time for another break, see you in a mini mo

Love & confession (I don’t do brief) XX
Tuesday, 23 December 2008