DAY 5 - July 13 2018
Here is a little update of the crew aboard :
"Allons enfants de la patriiiiie, le jour de gloire est arrive ! » (Singing the French National Anthem). Because it’s the tradition, Matthieu raised the French flag and we plan on opening that bottle of Margaux for lunch: it will go very well with our duck confit and pate on toast!! Busy night! Girafon was in rare form and we can’t wait for the rankings this morning. We had a moment of panic late yesterday: we could see sails on the horizon, way ahead of us! Couldn’t help but think: “Well… shoot! Who are they? How could they pass us and where did they come from?” That’s when we realized the boat was coming towards us, no AIS. I called them on the VHF and we talked for about 15 minutes. Cathy and Jeremy are sailing their Nicholson 44, which happens to be their home, and they are on their way back from Micronesia. After 52 days at sea, they are on their way to Newport Beach. They took pictures, we did the same and we plan on meeting them in Newport in August to share them. Meanwhile, we are now in the Garbage Patch… Some crap already got tangled in the rudders and the keel, but Fred and I devised a foolproof way to detangle the mess in previous races : accelerate into the wave, slacken the sails, push the rudder to the max, nose in the wind, and move forward. It works every time. Very noisy and impressive from the cockpit the first time you do it, but you gain a good 20 minutes. We heard the other French boat encountered a large fishing net and lines drifting alongside them! It’s the most frightening thing when you are sailing in the dark of night at 12 to 14 knots. We were able to dry out a bit yesterday, but we hope the sun will show-up soon. During the night, the wind was slacking at times, but would turn often and in a strange way: another weather transition. The bubble is below us now and we will probably jibe in about 400 nm. Girafon is pretty much in charge of her crew, rather than the opposite: the beast is an incredibly powerful monster. The autopilot is still performing even when we surf at 16 knots. Our best so far is 18.9 knots. Those were the news of the day, Charles."
"I guess the duck confit and Margaux were calling my name: Bastille Day is tomorrow! Today is Friday the 13h and I hope it will be a lucky one because the weather is playing strange games around us. Skies are overcast, dark gray and we going under spi, but we will try to rest anyway since we hardly slept at all last night.
Hugs from somewhere on the ocean, Charles."
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