Halfway to Brazil
11 January 2009
Today, 12 January, we have crossed the halfway mark between St Helena and our waypoint situated between the Brazilian mainland and the small island of Fernando De Noronha. Our winds have been very light and we have had our spinnaker up most of the time to get as many miles as possible in the light airs.
Also, we have had fishing lines of the back of the boat the entire time - not a bite! However, yesterday we suddenly caught three fish - two large Bonito and a reasonable sized Wahoo. We kept the one Bonito and the Wahoo, putting the largest Bonito back for another person to catch. Our freezer is nearly full again.
Our bananas have, as they always do, ripened all at once. We have been eating them until they com out of our ears and today we will be baking two loves of banana bread.
Radio propagation is still down in the dumps! However, I did manage to check in with Jack, AA3GZ, who runs the Maritime Mobile Net for the north Atlantic, last night. He reported a good signal from me but I really struggled to have a good signal from him. I think that one of our problems on board is that we have so much electronic equipment running that it is interfering with reception on the HF radio. Lets just hope that I can post this blog report before we loose reception from some of the Winlink stations.
Now I need to vent my anger. This is addressed to the idiot who is obviously reading this blog and took it upon himself to phone Joy one evening a few days back, claiming to be the US Coast Guard and stating that we were in difficulty. You are sick and need to get help. My thanks to Fred (ZS1FCS), Shaun (ZS1RA) and the HAM community in Cape Town, together with the guys at Cape Town Radio and the South African MRCC who helped put matters to rest and assure Joy that it was a hoax call and we were actually happily sailing along. Please remember that if you do not see an update to the blog or our position reports, we just have bad radio propagation and we are not in difficulty.
Talking about position reports, as we are struggling to post blog reports, for those trying to track us, the best is to click the "ShipTrak" link on the right of this page. It will be updated on a more regular basis than the map on the right of the blog page.
So, as there is now a full moon and the weather is fine, we are plodding along and hope to be off the Brazilian coast this time next week, I bid you all well until the next blog post. Regards from Jackie, Adrian, Luke and myself - John.