How did you feel when you left – were you nervous?
James (skipper): utterly terrified. I know I’ve forgotten something but I don’t know what it is yet!
Colette: not scared at all. I have full confidence in my skipper and boat.
Andrea: yes, I was nervous because I’ve never been away from home for such a long time.
Clare (first mate): I was too excited about getting started to be nervous when we left but was a bit nervous when we sailed through the night for the first time…
What was it like when the dolphins came?
Which time? We have seen more than 10 pods of dolphins now but we never get bored! We can hear them squeaking though the steel hull of the boat and hear them jumping in the water. At night we can see trails of bubbles through the water that are all sparkly with glowing plankton. We are still excited every time they come to play with us. In-fact some are playing with us now WE LOVE DOLPHINS!
Is it hectic on board?
Right now yes. Some people are calmer than others but Jim and Nick and crazy. Currently they are baking bread in the galley and singing loudly. There are eleven people on deck! Most of the time half the crew are asleep and things are a bit quieter but today because it is sunny and nearly dinner time everyone is awake and doing things.
What food are you eating?
We have lots of good food. Tonight is lasagna with home baked garlic and herb bread. Since leaving the UK we have had, sausage casserole, fish-finger sandwiches, stir fry, goulash, pasta pesto, fish mash and peas and lots of soup. Tomorrow we are having chicken curry and then risotto on Sunday. In between meals we eat lots of cake to keep us smiling. In port we all go for a run so we don’t get fat.
Are any of you sea sick?
Sadly one crew member has been sea sick every day so far but hopefully he is OK today and he has even made us all lunch. We call him sea sick Jonny and he has his own bucket. Marcus and Jim have been sick too but only once. The rest of the crew have been OK so far… Clare was nearly sick when she tripped and put her hand in a bucket of someone else’s sick!!
Does it feel squashed on board?
It is a bit squashed but we all like each other so we don’t mind. It is most squashed at dinner time when everyone wakes up to eat. If it is nice we eat on deck so we can all move our arms.
Have you seen any other interesting species of fish or jelly fish?
We haven’t seen any jelly fish yet but we will look extra hard from now on. Sometimes a Jelly fish can get sucked up into the engine so we are glad there are not many around.
Was it scary when the huge whale came near?
This whale was not too near so it wasn’t too scary but sometimes they come really close and sneak up under the boat. Then they are scary and sometimes they can be bigger than the ship.
When do you expect to reach your next port?
We have only just left La Coruna in Spain and we hope to get to Lisbon in Portugal for Monday dinner time. We have to sail fast to do this, if we sail too slow then we will be in the middle of Monday night.
Do you all have specific jobs on board (cook etc)
We all take turns doing the cooking and cleaning… even the skipper. The skipper is in charge of the boat and safety of everybody on it (James), the mate (Clare) is in charge of looking after the crew, she runs a watch (looks after four people) and is ready to step in if something bad happens to the skipper, the engineer (Jon) also runs a watch and is in charge of fixing our complicated equipment (watermaker, engine, electrics, satellite phone etc), Colette is our nature guide and also helps Clare look after the food. The rest of the crew are all divided up into 3 watches with some experienced people and some less experienced. Some of them have given themselves extra jobs… for example Zoe and Andy have put themselves in-charge of filming the trip and Jim has been helping to lead the third watch so James can get some sleep.
What’s the scariest moment so far?
Jess: thinking i’m going to fall out of bed.
Jon: thinking he was going to get sea sick sailing out of Holyhead.
Sea sick Jonny: running out of buckets.
Marcus: only having one working toilet only two hours before leaving.
What’s the weather like?
We’ve had everything from sunshine to thick fog to driving rain. Right now it’s sunny and everyone is out reading their books on deck.
Has anyone fallen in yet?
Not yet but Marcus has banged his head. Jess has four blue plasters on her hands, Andrea burnt herself on the cooker whilst cooking dinner and Jon has bruises on his knees.
Do you have any time to relax?
We have four hours on watch and then 8 hours off. Normally we go to sleep but if we are not tired we can relax, read our books and chill.
Is it difficult living on a boat?
Marcus: everything takes twice as long because you keep wobbling about.
Colette: it take a while to get used to the movement and stop falling over.
Seasick Jonny: the boat doesn’t suit you have to suit the boat.
Marcus: it’s quite noisy at night with all creaking of the ropes and rigging and the noise of water. If a window open the water can come in and that makes everywhere wet.
Can you go swimming off the boat?
Yes you can! But only when the waves are small enough and the boat is going slow enough.
Are you missing your families?
Marcus: I’m missing my toothbrush
Andrew: Yes I misplaced them a couple of days ago.
Everybody: yes but not enough to want to come back!
When did you last wash?
This morning (big cheer!) before that it was four days ago… last Tuesday.