If I can think about a word to describe Leg 1, it would be ‘Honeymoon’. This is indeed a honeymoon trip in which all the crew are getting to know each other with so many stories to talk about and joys to share.
There are a few highlights…hoisting the birthday flag to celebrate Michael’s birthday, rushing up to the deck just in order to get a quick rain shower... and I taught everybody to say Guan Qi and Kai Qi which are Chinese versions of turn on/off the gas, as ‘mothers’ normally had to yell it ten times to the helm station trying to make clear about whether it is on or off. Or, had a ‘war’ with flying fish in the middle of the night, hundreds of them jumped out of the water, and some landed on our deck, hit our arms, shoulders, even right into one crew member’s mouth! But don’t get me wrong that there are no challenges in this leg. Flying kites that worryingly got wrapped around the forestay, bearing excessive heat and rolling in my bunk to try to get a little sleep are not easy. However, the memories we have created together are far more encouraging than the challenges, and when I look back at the pictures of all laughs in the doldrums, I would say, what a wonderful summer in 2023.