ARC Rally, Day 5

We gave thanks yesterday for almost an entire day of breeze, albeit rather light and shifty. The engine logged only one hour to move us out of a wind hole. In the afternoon we spent a few hours close reaching with jib and staysail in waters so calm that we were sailing faster than the wind speed. Later in the day the wind veered enough for us to close reach with the MPS.
As the day was otherwise uneventful and the ride smooth, the boys took on the task of repairing the tear in the genoa. The tear was at least five meters long and in the middle of a pane. After tidying up the edges they applied sticky back to both sides and then went about hand stitching the patch to add strength. After it was done, I was warned never to use the sail again.
Thanksgiving was celebrated with a roast turkey dinner with potatoes, carrots and a mixed salad washed down with a white Spanish wine. The turkey was the boneless roast type so there was no stuffing. We have to make some consolations for being at sea.
The breeze carried on through the night and we were able to keep the kite up till mid morning when the breeze died once again. We motor sailed for a few hours till the fickle breeze filled in again.
Other boats in the fleet are reporting catching mahi-mahi, but we’ve had no more luck since our first catch. Dolphins and pilot whales are prolific, with regular spottings.
None of the boys on board has had a shave since Las Palmas, so it looks as if a beard growing contest is under way.
Cumulus clouds typical of the trade wind belt are becoming the norm. Perhaps that is a good omen, but we’re still not sure when to turn right and head for St. Lucia.
Moonshadow’s position at noon was 18˚ 20’ north by 24˚ 57’ west and our noon to noon run was 157 nautical miles.
Cheers, George, Merima, Charles, Graham and Kurt.

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