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Race 4 Day 17

Switzerland - Roser Preuss

21 NOV 2013 - Race 4

Good morning family, friends and followers,

It's that time in the passage when the crew replaces counting up, ‘day 11 on board, day 12,’ with counting down the days until our arrival (6 days to go, 5 days to go). We even did our sweepstake today of possible arrival times. I think everyone is looking forward to that first hot shower, wearing dry shoes and drinking a couple of beers in the pub.

Today I realised that having an eclectic mix of 22 people on boat a 70 foot yacht provides all the entertainment you need. (Who needs television?) Everyone brings their life stories, an array of experiences, choices they made, views they developed, and knowledge they accumulated over the years.

And there is never a boring moment on the boat, if only you know how to start a conversation. Today we had discussions about the meaning of marriage, happiest moments in life and toughest decisions taken. Getting to know one another better really is great. And the saying never judge a book by its cover is proving to be correct.

After Hannah's birthday yesterday, we celebrated Steen's birthday today.

He is the self-confessed oldest teenager in the world, and great fun to be around! There were plenty of Happy Birthday's sung (being on watch 3 times a day, must be like having 3 birthdays in one day!) and a lovely fruit cake to mark the occasion. The spirits are still high!

Some of us have started to turn their thoughts to the festive season and today the first Christmas-card picture was taken. Even though I have to admit sending out Southern ocean Christmas cards is pretty unique, it's still way too early for me for Christmas. I miss autumn at home and don't know whether you can arrive at Christmas without having experienced autumn?

I miss the browning of the leaves, the grey and miserable weather (not that we don't have any of that here, but experiencing it on land is different), and warming up indoors by a fireplace (none of that here!) I also miss when it goes dark early (again none of that here, we are constantly adjusting our watches) and when it starts getting cold outside. Once we get to Albany we'll have to do something to speed up that Christmassy feeling.

Some have already suggested Christmas decorations for Heidi (our nickname for Switzerland) and a Secret Santa. But for now, let's get to Albany safe and sound first! The wind is due to pick up soon and the next low is coming through. I really hope it won't be as bad as the last one, it isn't forecast to be.

After that it should be plain sailing into Albany. Much love from everyone on board to their families, friends and our followers. I can't wait to speak to mine again!

Roser Preuss