Brazil, here we come!
While we’re not cruising the coast of Brazil from Rio upwards as originally planned we couldn’t resist a quick stop-off before continuing north to the Caribbean. The Fernando de Noronha islands lie off the northeastern coast of Brazil and we figured it would be a shame to sail past them especially as they are a National Park full of sealife, clear waters and magnificent beaches. I can’t image how they could be any more beautiful than anywhere else we’ve been but who knows what’s in store for us? This is my favorite part of the trip, seeing new land on the horizon, dropping anchor, meeting the locals for the first time and finding out what’s cool to do ashore. New land, new people, new culture, new language and hopefully lots of new food, especially new fruit and veg at the market! We should arrive there this afternoon. Bring it on!
Thank to everyone who has posted on our blog and/or sent us messages. We really love hearing from you and we also appreciate your suggestions on what you want us to blog about. We’ve had a fair few messages asking us what a day offshore is like. I’ve written a bit below to give ye an idea.
A Day in the Life.
Everyone starts the day at different times depending on what morning watch we have. We run watches continually, as you would expect. We’ve tried various systems since we joined the yacht and the best is one where we run two hours on and six hours off, doing the same hours every day which gives us a great routine.
Those on the first watch up in daylight tend to wash and scrub the deck. I always start the day with exercise and recently I’ve found skipping pretty handy to do on the aft deck! I take whatever food we need for the day out of the freezer.. It doesn’t take long to defrost in this heat! Paul normally connects to the internet through the satphone and downloads boat emails majority of which tend to be from Oyster with either Rally news and information on the next stopover or emails from Oyster aftersales with details on any boat parts Paul may have requested to get sent to our next destination. Paul would normally also be in contact with someone from our next port of call organizing various paperwork and also booking fuel if poss. He’ll download the latest weather information at this point too. He doesn’t go online and search the net as that would coast a fortune so he just connects quickly and does a send-receive in his inbox and that brings in all the relevant info. This blog is sent out through his email too and uploads the other end on our blogsite along with a notification on facebook and emails sent to those on the email list. The Oyster fleet run a radio sched twice a day where everyone gives their position and wind along with any other concerns.
When Alan gets up he does his regular engine and generator checks and carries out any maintenance needed. He’s also hoping to get the qualification of Ocean Yachtmaster after this trip and since we left Ascension he’s been plotting our course through Astronavigation using Paul’s sextant.
At lunch and dinner times all crew must be on deck to eat together which is important team bonding time. Off course there’s prep involved for both these meals but it’s normally straight forward. We tend to have a salad for lunch which I’ll do up and then Lucy and Als wife, kizzy, heat up one of my defrosted meals for dinner. I prepare these meals and freeze them when at anchor. On a lot of superyachts the chef does all the cooking offshore and doesn’t partake in the watch keeping. I love sailing and running a watch and as first mate it would be crazy be involved, even the night time watch so it just means I need to have the food prepared in advance. The wash up is pretty straight forward after each meal and my Dad, Joe, has become particularly useful in the galley much to my surprise!
Everyday before dinner we do our daily dance-off, which is a 30-40min workout with the music up and everyone giving it loads on the aft deck!! The dance-off is the best thing for team morale on the boat. No matter how big the yacht everyone can get a bit of cabin-fever and so a bop about really helps to clear the mind and put us in an empowering state! Lets not forget we normally have something happening on the fishing front too which can keep us busy. Mind ya, so far the South Atlantic hasn’t proved as fruitful as other oceans with only one pelagic caught since we left Cape Town, however we have caught some fish at anchor both in St Helena and Ascension Island and I’m allowing them on the scoreboard for this trip due to crew pressure!!
And now for the score.. Fish: 5 Vs LUSH: 9
Hopefully this will give ye all a bit of an idea of life onboard. There’s a whole lot more but I’ll save all that for the ‘Extras’ section we’ll put together after this trip.
One Life. Live it!