Currently located 150nm SW of Cadiz and experiencing moderate 10-15kt N/NW winds with a 1m NW swell. Current temperature is 15 degrees.
Welcome to day 43 of our voyage. Overnight we continued to make good speed towards Cadiz and due to a wind shift even managed to shutdown main engines at 0300 this morning and sail. This continued until late this afternoon when the wind moderated as forecast which meant starting engines again and motor sailing so that we can still arrive in Cadiz on schedule.
Today was a big day for Young Endeavours Staff Crew (Staffies) as we celebrated Day 100!! That is 100 days since departing Sydney on the 22nd December which is a major achievement. We still have a long way to go but with the professionalism and dedication that they have shown in getting us this far I have every confidence that the next 100 Days will be as successful as the last, keep up the great work!!
Today we also celebrated Travis’s 25th Birthday in the normal Young Endeavour way with plenty of renditions of singing ‘Happy Birthday’, big hugs from all the Crew and of course a fantastic Birthday Cake cooked by Chef Aaron . Happy Birthday Trav!!
Volunteering to write tonight’s Log is Mac who deferred writing it until he came down from the foremast after experiencing a fantastic sunset. Mac said that this was a daunting task but I am sure that you will agree he has done a wonderful job. Enjoy!
Until tomorrow, take care.
Captain’s Log – 30 Mar 15
Day 43 –
On this, our second to last night at sea, I have been given the opportunity to write the Captain’s Log. For me, this is quite a daunting task. What do I write, what do I mention? Do people really want to hear what I have to say or hear about our day!? The crashing into each other, shower gymnastics, sleeping while airborne and sail handling on the bow in the middle of the night all seems so normal to us now.
Writing really isn’t my thing and as with most tasks I am given, I put off the task in favour of something else. After a few minutes of procrastination and hearing that the rest of my watch was going to climb for sunset, I decided that it was much more important to accomplish a goal I had set myself over a month ago. I wanted to climb the foremast to the very top, and tonight the conditions gave me the perfect opportunity. So this evening, 33 metres above the Atlantic Ocean with nothing but a very simple looking harness to catch me, almost perfect visibility, on my way from Rio de Janeiro to Cadiz via Cape Verde and the Canary Islands, with 23 amazing young Australians, I watched the most perfect sunset…surrounded by a pod of whales. As I sit in front of the computer I still can’t believe what happened and how lucky I am. Everyone was excited, the whole crew ran to midships but White Watch had the prime seats! I have had some amazing experiences in my 28 years and been lucky enough to do some very special things, but how do I even rate something like that? Not only am I one of less than 100 Youth Crew that will have sailed across the equator on Young Endeavour, I get to do things like this on the way.
I suppose I should probably let you know what happened earlier in the day! White Watch had the forenoon and it was a perfect start, we woke to find that during the night some sails had been set and the engines were off. Believe it or not, we were sailing! We didn’t have much to do, the Reds and Blues set everything during their respective watches but we did have to furl a couple of sails as the wind picked up. Since Tenerife we haven’t done a whole lot of sail handling and it felt good to get our hands dirty. Even though everyone understands we have targets to meet and sometimes there is no choice but to motor sail, setting a sail is still our ultimate goal and never fails to bring a smile.
We had a relaxing afternoon, only interrupted by possibly the most competitive game of non-competitive rope races every held on STS Young Endeavour. I can hear a few of the YE alumni scoff at that suggestion. Let me assure you, I have seen AFL matches with less banter and cheering (and possibly less blood)! It was all in good spirits and White Watch won the moral victory, which is all that really matters. We will find out who won overall in the next day or so.
The afternoon slipped into the evening and along came another great meal prepared by Aaron. The best was kept for last as we celebrated Travis’ 25th birthday with a chocolate mousse cake that was more mousse than cake. Happy Birthday Trav! Now go clean up the party popper string that still covers the bridge!
I think we are all struggling to understand how we feel about our voyage coming to an end. For quite a few of us it will be the last time we will be allowed to sail on Young Endeavour as we will be too old next time a world trip comes around, and we are already too old for the shorter voyages. Personally, I couldn’t be happier. I never did an 11-day voyage and this was my first exposure to the world of sailing. On my first, and probably last trip, I sailed across the Atlantic Ocean and visited two countries that I will probably never see again and that most people probably couldn’t point to on a map. I experienced nothing but amazing. Beats working at a bank in Chatswood, eh Dion?
Ps. Happy Birthday to Anthea Mulcahy!!! Hope you have the loveliest of birthdays. In your honour I just spent the sunset whale watching, you’re welcome. Love Cass xox
Pps. Atlanta, Mum, Dad and everyone back home, I finally learnt how to use a sextant! Tonight and last night I managed to put a fix on using just the stars! Albeit I was 10 and 6 nautical miles off, still pretty good for a rookie! Love Max
PPPS. Happy Birthday Mum! Hope you had a great day, I can’t wait to see you and hear all about it! My phone has died so just send emails and I will respond when I can. Love you all, Mac