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La Contenta - Day 18: Let’s go fly a kite

Day 18: Let’s go fly a kite
We have wind!  Its gentle, its steady and we are moving.  All good.  And we are all feeling good.  We have had our kite flying all day and have started to make steady progress towards land.  Occasionally the land we are heading to is Saint Lucia – occasionally not.  The wind just needs to veer around a little to give us a consistent course, but what’s a few degrees out amongst friends?
Our cruising chute is looking magnificent.  It’s much prettier than the RAV-4 we traded in to purchase her.  She is doing us proud.  She is also the perfect sail for us at the moment with the on-going concerns we have with our rigging.  Several days ago I mentioned that we had put a steel band around the base of our mast to secure the vang. This was to help support and preserve the integrity of the rivets.  Well we have now lost one!  We have rigged a block and tackle vang, and a block and tackle restraint at the end of the boom to secure things further.  We have also reported our situation to ARC Rally Control.  We have been in light winds so it has not had any further stress, and we will keep the end of the mast within the footprint of the boat to limit the load on the boom vang.  This together with a careful sail plan should hopefully prevent things from worsening.  All this means that we are safe, but will be slow.  We are still aiming to get to Saint Lucia before the finish line closes next Friday.  We are dreaming of being greeted by smiley faces and a tray of rum.  This is becoming even more important as we finished our boat rum today.  The pirate song that we taught our children when they were younger is coming back to haunt us  ‘A bottle of rum to settle the tum and that’s the life for me – hey’.
Along with the wind we had another milestone today.  I am on watch this evening with bare legs.  My thermal leggings are no longer needed.  Its a first for Ewen too, on handover he was not wearing his woolly hat and Jacket.  Things are hotting up!
Our cooking is becoming more and more creative as our fresh ingredients dwindle.  Today we were proactive and Cal made a stunning tortilla with some of our remaining eggs.  It’s now in our freezer for another day.  Our philosophy has become ‘use it or loose it’. We have enough oranges left to have daily fresh juice, but even with our best efforts I cant see us getting through all of the onions and lemons.  So much of the fruit and veg have been vulnerable to bruising and the heat, but these two seem mightily resilient and we haven’t lost one to natural wastage.  We have a melon left which we hope to have tomorrow.  There is a little trepidation with this as the last one had started to ferment and was ‘interesting’!
All is quiet on board.  Its 2 am and the gentle swoosh of the water is kissing the humming of the flying kite.  The moon is bright and casting trails of light on the ocean.  The sea is flat and the winds are steady.  I feel totally alive and at peace.  I am beginning to remember why I wanted to do this again...


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