Well here is hoping that this will be my last blog of this leg and that by the time you read this we will be safely in Cape Town. That said, we still have just over 100 miles to run and as you know anything can happen in that time, so the tension on board is palpable and the anticipation of all that Cape Town has to offer is growing by the hour. By this stage of the race it can be hard to maintain focus as we have all been running at 100 per cent for nearly 14 days now and the home straight can feel like such a long road despite its physical length.
As with the other boats, we have long since said goodbye to our spinnakers and the relatively flat sailing that accompanies them to switch back to life at an angle mode (currently a rather uncomfortable 35 degrees!) which makes even the simplest tasks take on a whole new level of difficulty. For example I have just had a shower, something which would normally take only five minutes or thereabouts, whereas mine took probably an hour.By the time I had chased all my shower water around the various bilges it had found its way into as it seems the shower water only really goes where it is supposed to on Port tack and gains a whole new mind of its own when we are healed on starboard tack!
Then we move on to using the navigation computer and writing this blog - well if you could see how I am strapped to the navigation station in an attempt to remain upright, then I guarantee you would roll around laughing, but it does work. The only problem I have now is the keyboard and mouse sliding away from me as I try to use them, but I have managed to find a cunning way of jamming them in the corner, so as with everything on racing yachts and boats in general, a little ingenuity goes a long way!
So as you can imagine, if I find this challenging, then many of the crew are really looking forward to being able to stand upright without having to brace themselves against the nearest wall or hand hold and being able to move forward at speeds greater than one step every five seconds!
On the plus side, 35 degrees of heel did not stop curry night and round the world crew member Nikki Banks, our sole mother for the day, served up one of the best curries so far, greeted with the sound of silence, well apart from cutlery hitting plates, as 20 hungry mouths vacuumed it up in the blink of an eye before heading either to deck or off watch for the next four hours.
So here is hoping that, for those of you who are there to welcome us, we will see you nice and early in the Victoria and Alfred Waterfront. For those of you at home, thank you for all your support, we really appreciate it and need it, it is the life blood that keeps us all going and be sure to re-join us when the race restarts on Monday 4 November.