DAY 25 AT SEA

Distance covered so far: 3103 nautical miles
Last 24 hours: 144 nautical miles (6 knots average)
To Martinique: 328 nautical miles

Max practiced his solo sailing skills yesterday by performing a reefing manoeuvre without any help from us. Since Porky’s running rigging (i.e. any lines and sheets that are used to set and trim sails) is not designed for manoeuvring by just one person, he had to walk back and forth between the mast and cockpit and the manoeuvre took a little longer. But it was definitely doable and with a little more practice it will go faster. Fortunately, there are at least three of us on board with Daniel, Max and I that can help. In the afternoon a threatening-looking squall loomed at the horizon. Expecting strong gusts, we completely furled in the headsail so that the boat remains controllable. But in the end it was just a super normal small rain shower that happily washed the salt water from our skin. At night, the passing showers were no longer so harmless and kept us on our feet. Since yesterday the wind has turned east and we are sailing on starboard tack in a south-westerly direction. In the morning I had my K&K (Kombüsenkrise, german for galley crisis), as Max so affectionately called it. First, the raw pancake batter flew all over the kitchen. The second attempt also went wrong, because the dough was too salty and tasted like soap. In addition, Hermann (our sourdough starter for bread) did not rise properly overnight. The last and third attempt with a new recipe finally succeeded and the hungry stomachs were filled with pancakes. In between, my cursing comments from below were amused and laughed at in the cockpit. When Papa cleaned up the mess I had left behind, another squall came. This time the reefing manoeuvre did not go well. At first there was a lack of communication between the person handling the halyard at the mast and the rest of the crew in the cockpit, then another person had to rush to the mast to help, the reefing lines had to be loosened and tightened several times and then the reefing line got caught in the lazy jack. When we finally settled everything, the shower had long since passed. We definitely learned to have the more experienced crew help in such situations or to simply drop the mainsail if things have to be sorted quickly. Unfortunately, we also discovered small holes in the fabric near the battens of the mainsail. We do not know whether these occurred during the poorly executed reefing manoeuvre or before. A few boat repairs have already accumulated, which we can work through in quiet anchorages in the Caribbean. Not long, then we can see and smell land again. The hope of discovering other boats on the horizon increases every day. How many boats do you think have sailed across the Atlantic with us?

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