Give me the stars to steer by
And the wind in my face
And I am at peace
It was a beautiful evening the other night at the helm. The stars were out, the wind was fresh and the seas were “calm” compared to the pounding we have been taking for quite a few days. It was a beautiful night for a sail. In addition to the twinkling of stars overhead, our wake also sparkled from phosphorescence of plankton, with the occasional light sparkles washing down the deck. The beauty that nature has to offer.
Early in the morning of March 21st, we celebrated a rather auspicious occasion as we passed from the eastern to the western hemisphere, crossing the international dateline in the wee hours of the morning. There were shouts of joy from above decks and below as it also meant that the rest of the race is basically downhill as the line also roughly marked the half-way point for this leg of the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race. Spirits are high on the boat and I must say, I am a tad surprised how well we are getting along as a single team after two weeks of twelve people being cooped up in a what can only be described as a tumbling washing machine down below most of the time. It is a great testament to the crew members I have been fortunate to sail with as well as Ben, our skipper.
All thoughts are now focused on San Francisco and the days until we cross under the finish line of the Golden Gate Bridge. So far, we have been pushing hard to maintain our gap over our nearest rivals behind us who are battling for third and fourth respectively, as well as closing in on the first place position. We have been fortunate that we have not had to deal with serious equipment breakage, a factor that other rivals have had to contend with. Spirits are high here in the middle of the Pacific – although perhaps dampened a tad by the chronic lack of sleep.