14 March 2012 | South Atlantic
We're currently in a succession of squalls with lots of rain and increased wind, still sailing to windward (northerly winds) and so bouncy as well as wet. Other excitement has been seeing a ship in the distance (and Betty saw one during her watch last night). Such is the life of the long distance sailor! Squalls apart the sailing of the past few days has been fantastic. Bright, breezy, warm days with usually 6 - 7kts boat speed on average. The lively deep blue of the sea and light blue of the generally cloudless skies provide a friendly feeling which contrasts with the brooding, menacing albeit compelling lonely grey seas and skies of the Southern Ocean where we began our voyage. Personally the biggest challenge has been getting used to living within a small space which is continually bouncing around and usually at an angle, requiring one to brace oneself all the time. The cold and tiredness of the first few days were unpleasant but have now receded. I do recall thinking about 48 hours out of Stanley after a particularly cold and bouncy time that I wasn't sure the voyage was such a great idea, and then a split second later realising I could not get off! The boat has been brilliant: fast, easy and assured. All the equipment has stood up well so far with only minor niggles. My main on-going issue is simply the battery drain despite the fact we are towing an excellent aqua generator which produces a pretty constant 2 amps. This is largely the result of the fridge/freezer but that's the life of luxury for you. The most controversial issue on board is the Lazyjacks: Carl would happily dump them overboard whilst I argue it's just a question of technique. Betty diplomatically sees pros and cons in them! The passage from Uruguay is proving to be so fast we pass our half way point from the Falklands to St Helena tomorrow (c 1,950 miles). Carl has a present to open and it is planned that Grog will be issued to all hands and that we shall toast the Queen!