Position: 39° 04’N 031° 49’W
Wind. S 18-23knots
Daily run: 162 miles
The train ride continues unchecked and we are closing in on Flores where we expect to arrive around midnight tonight. There is no chance of anchoring on this unknown coast in the dark so we will find shelter in the Lee of the island and sail up and down until it gets light. Hopefully there will be a suitable anchorage somewhere – in my mind the Azores is all calm waters and great high pressure systems producing delightful settled conditions. But not for our arrival – we have SE winds force 4-5, occasionally 6. Marvellous.
No voyage is complete without its dramas, big and small. Last night we had one of each. Firstly no fresh water coming out of the taps, which is odd as we’ve used very little. We have a tank on either side of the boat, connected by a pipe. We’ve been heeling over on one tack for days on end so the tank to windward is empty and the pump drawing air. Not a problem that won’t rebalance on our arrival – bottled water for tea in the meantime. Luxury!
The other drama, was less straight forward. Around 2300 the engine starter battery alarm (very high pitched. Very persistent. Ignore at your peril) started to go off, suggesting the battery was worryingly low. Luckily the engine started and we had a really good look at the battery level and all seemed normal. Running the engine for an hour didn’t do anything to stop the alarm though from
Coming back on (once engine off again) so we opened up the back of the control panel to reveal multicoloured spaghetti aplenty and Tom had a good poke around. It reminded me of those bomb disposal scenes in action movies when they have to snip the right wire. After some deliberation Tom pulled hard on one connection and finally there was peace. What was interesting about the incident was the degree of impairment one has after 10 days with no more than 2.5 hours sleep at a time. We deal with these puzzles, yes, but it takes time and I know my own brain is functioning way below capacity. I’m all in favour of trouble shooting at very slow speeds (if possible of course) because of this.
We are longing to find some respite and rest in the shelter of Flores, but also prepared for it simply not being tenable, due to wind and/or swell. We won’t actually know until we poke our nose into each anchorage. Wish us luck!