We’re now almost clear of the doldrums and into the trade winds. We’ve had some good spells of sailing but the wind’s not that consistent yet and so the engine keeps coming on so that we make good progress towards the Azores. There are some heavy rain showers drifting around and so waterproof jackets have been required at times (but we don’t need to wear much underneath them). The wind often increases in strength and shifts direction underneath the shower clouds and so we’ve been kept busy tacking to continue heading towards our destination. The forecast was for north easterly winds but it has been closer to north. Unfortunately our course to the Azores is 9 degrees true and so with the current wind direction we can’t directly make that course. The chart plotter shows our VMG, the Velocity Made Good, which is how fast we’re going in the direction towards our destination. We keep checking the VMG to make sure that we’re on the best tack to get us to the Azores. Currently we’re on starboard tack with the full jib, staysail and main-sail up.
After Saturday’s equator crossing excitement, yesterday was a quiet day onboard Elinca. The food shopping team found some salted cod in the supermarket in Rio and this has been soaking for the last few days. Last night Sarah, Cliggy, Rachel and Sari made delicious cod balls for tea. However, we discovered why the equator slops smelled so bad this time; some of the fishy brine from the soaking cod had been added into the slops mixture – yuck!