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Aretha - The A to Z of an Atlantic Crossing - Team Aretha - 9th December 2014

15 13 North, 54 05 West.

Calm reigns on board Team Aretha today. Alan the autopilot seems happy in his work with half a ram and we’ve been in dialogue with the outstanding support team at Oyster to understand what happened and why, and to work on the fixes when we arrive in St Lucia. Also confirmed today is our replacement toilet pump which will arrive one day ahead of us in St Lucia ready for us to fit. The joys of modern technology that we can get all this diagnosed and ordered whilst at sea.

Excellent sailing today - good settled breeze, sunshine, flat deck and more outstanding cuisine. Bluebell is rapidly becoming our Number 1 chef - lunch was Pasta with an excellently prepared spicy vegetable sauce.

Medical notes - managed to clonk a shackle on my forehead today. My own fault. Doh. No damage done other than to my pride.

So, today’s despatches are the A to Z of what an Atlantic Crossing onboard Team Aretha is all about.

A - Alan the Autopilot - top man when he’s on the job.
B - Barracuda - yep caught one and best thrown back, not eaten.
C - Chef Jani - every boat needs one - can conjure the outstanding from ordinary ingredients
D - Dorado - our favourite fish
E - Emails - always brightens our day to hear from the outside world and step outside boat life temporarily
F - Flushing toilet! Be good to have the forward one working again when we get to St Lucia!
G - Grib files - the weather files we get in daily to chart our course based on the forecast wind speed and direction
H - Hotel - Sandals - where Jani and Paul are escaping to when we arrive!
I - iphone - esssential for listening to music via blue tooth, for the Astro Nav app to work out where we are and the food game app for Willow
J - Jet Head - our killer fishing lure
K - Kettle - freshly brewed green tea and coffee always ready for the oncoming watch - the welcome sound of the whistle from the kettle to let you know a drink is on its way
L - Lazzarette - the massive locker on the aft deck which needs to be emptied when we need to access the autopilot
M - Moonlight - so bright and clear - providing all the light we need at night
N - Nachos (cheesy ones) - Bluebells favourite receipe in her rapidly expanding repertoire of boat food (I think we have our home grown Jani replacement)
O - oh my goodness - just seen the water temperature is up to 32.6 degrees C
P - paddling pool in the cockpit - big hit with the children
Q - Quartermasters - joint role for Jani and Paul in charge of all our provisions and managing snacks for 3 small people
R - Rum punches - what Nichola is dreaming of when we arrive in St Lucia
S - Squalls - big feature of life out here and best avoided - in fact just spent the last 30 mins coming up to wind to avoid a massive one
T - Tantrums (children’s)- frequent and stormy to start - considerably reduced in frequency and voracity as we’ve got used to life at sea
U - UV - tonnes of sun cream needed out here as its super hot
V - V Berth - Jani and Paul quarters in the bows and where our food stores are kept under their watchful eyes
W - Windward Islands - the group of Islands where we are heading : )
X - Xanadu - one of the many poems (and stories) that have been shared during our crossing
Y - Yachts - haven’t seen one for days now - plenty to start with - in 3 days time will be great to re-unite with our friends and swap tales of the Atlantic
Z - zzzzzzz where I’m off to shortly - managing the zzz for all the crew vitally important for a happy healthy ship

Over and out from Team Aretha on a warm and balmy night.

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