White Ocean Racing

May 21 - Steve's blog Number 10.

Icegate Approaches.

Hi, later than usual today with this, things have been a bit busy - I only just had my porridge, not that it's porridge weather, the sun is out and it is beautiful and warm, there is a bit of wind from the North East, about 7 or 8 knots to be precise, and we now have the big spinnaker up as we head down towards the - you've guessed it - ice gate, although we should be around it tomorrow.

The reason for the delay is that all last night an this morning I have been busy on deck. Last night on a southerly tack I found myself in a massive eddy of the Gulf Stream, this was a friendly current this one, it was running south at between 2 and 3 knots in places, but with wind against tide it was like being one mile off Portland Bill in the race but for a few hours, and the wind was gusting up and down which kept me at it, reefs in and out, then through the rest of the night we went straight down the line pretty much before changing to gennaker and then the big spinnaker which is up now. Again, yesterdays swell is coming straight at us making it hard to keep the sails full, but we are moving and I am thankful.

I gave myself a birthday yesterday and gave my hair a quick oilchange (wash!) in the sink - it was a real novelty afterwards to feel the wind actually blowing through it rather than around it like something off a Brylcream advert! Shaving I have left for another day, that will be a bit of a job, I don't want to rush things by doing too much on the personal grooming front in one go, people will think I'm turning into David Beckham or something!

I had a slight culinary disaster yesterday, I was cooking packet pasta, my speciality, when we fell off a big wave whilst I didn't have hold of the pot. Most of the contents went all over the one and only mattress that is on board, and a bit got on my sleeping bag. After eating what supper I had saved, the mattress cover got put outside in the combined washer drier aka the guardwires, where it was washed in the rain and dried in the sun, then put back on. I couldn't think of anything worse than arriving in Boston with the boat smelling of milk and cheese sauce! I think we have got away with it luckily, I don't think US immigration would let me in smelling like that!

For super I found Mexican Beanfeast, with a can of baked beans and half a packet of smash.As soon as I found it I immediately fancied it, got it all cooking and then drove into my Gulf Stream eddy - I had three things to cook all at once, and we all know that blokes can only do one thing at a time, so trying to trying to keep pans and kettles on the go and not spilt as he boat bounced around like mad was quite a feat, for me anyway.

Now I have to go back on deck, the wind is about to change again and I have to keep my eye on the ball and keep the boat going - remember I can only do one thing at once!

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