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Charm - Day 1 to St. Lucia

We are on our way to the Caribbean! It's a relief to be back at sea, trapped on a boat, restricted to the same space and same company. It might sound odd, but it actually is. As a person who likes to do everything, it is exhausting to be in a new place like Mindelo with so many opportunities for activities. Far better to have boundaries, at least tonight.

Joe had us leave the dock at 10 am so we could anchor and scrub the bottom to get rid of the vegetation and sea life that are constantly accumulating and making us slower. After everyone got out of the water and showered, we were preparing for the start by sailing around the area to check out wind angles, start line, etc. Tim and Marin were taking down the laundry. I heard Marin's distraught scream that meant something life-ending (in her world) had occurred.

In this case, a piece of laundry, her swimsuit bottoms, had fallen into the water. She yelled, "Get a net!" and then collapsed into a pile of sobbing goo. Cobin and I spotted the bright blue swimsuit with the skirt that was helpfully keeping it afloat. We used our man overboard technique to point while Joe swung the boat around. After Marin moved past wailing "They're sinking!" she pulled herself together and helped point.

Kent spotted them after Cobin and I lost sight and directed Joe to their location. We were still 20 feet away and the helpful skirt was no longer doing its job. Marin's volume edged up. I looked around to see if anyone was more swim-ready than I and fortunately Joe was already taking off his shirt. He

Interruption - a bird just crash landed on the deck about 2 feet away. I thought it was a flying fish because it was flopping around so much. It composed itself and looks like it will be spending some time huddled on the deck.

So Joe dove in and rescued the bottoms and Kent rescued Joe by driving the boat to pick him up. Of course Joe, being Joe, couldn't go up the swim ladder we had helpfully lowered. Instead, he did a boulder problem and climbed up the rigging at the front of the boat.

We rinsed people and swimsuits and headed out for a great start. The winds were calmer than the Las Palmas start but still brisk enough to be fun.

We raced next to our fellow Americans and Outremer owners in Cayuse for a while and then managed to move away from them.

We've got a nice breeze behind us and had some delicious pasta carbonara (thanks to Massillon for the cooking class) and now I'm turning it over to Kent who I am sure will trim and drive us very well during his watch.

The bird has moved on and I am headed to bed.

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