Brazil to The Falklands – Day 5

Reading: Meantime (Frankie Boyle)
Weather: Grey, less grey and finally a hint of sunshine. Wind – sod all …..
Thought for the day: The Dutch call a black eye a blue eye and a bruise translates literally as a blue spot.
Evening meal: Chicken curry with rice and lentils
Course: 180-200oC
Distance covered: At 1200 we had covered 643 miles (Log 4,828)
Wildlife headcount: A yellow-nosed albatross ….

By the time we came on watch in the morning the rain had finally eased, but taking no chances at all, we all came out in full sailing gear. During the night watch they had taken down the staysail as well as it wasn’t doing anything constructive – in fact rattling around, it was probably doing the opposite and gradually self-destructing …. The weather slowly improved during the morning watch and the wind died more or less completely. We are motoring south trying to get to the next weather system which should give us 20-25 knots of wind to keep blowing us south. Otherwise we face several days of windless weather with a static depression hanging over us – the weather matching our state of mind if we can’t escape it!

We had great fun though watching a yellow-nosed albatross flying around, though flying may be the wrong descriptive word. Gliding would be more appropriate. The yellow-nosed is one of the smaller albatrosses, but it is still a magnificent bird. It is distinctive and the clue is in the name – the yellow beak. They glide close over the wave tops dipping and turning to stay often just inches above the water. There is an incredible elegance to their flight and they are certainly perfectly adapted for their environment. Their wings dip slightly at the ends lending them an aura of relaxed dignity in their flight. At some stage we may get beyond A in our A-Z of bird-spotting but for the time being collecting some more A’s is fine ….