Every journey is a journey of self discovery. Sailing, I have discovered once again, is best done as short hops of less than a day, or long passages of more than a week. Sailing a yacht is disruptive and uncomfortable, the movement is tiring, even simple tasks must be planned, the constant disorientation can be nauseating and the necessity for watch-keeping disrupts normal sleep patterns. Add to that the inevitable breakages – this is always the time when shit happens --and the result is Grumpy Dave.

So I took special care on this long passage to avoid him. Merel has seen him on other occasions I am sorry to say, but this trip Grumpy Dave is banished.

On a long passage like this, one’s body and mind eventually adapt to the stresses and strangeness. At first, paradoxically, even though one becomes tired, it is impossible to sleep. The compounding effect of the stress, 4-hour watches and lack of sleep hollows me out. But eventually, around the third day, my body says enough – and falls asleep.

The effect is magical. Just a few hours of sleep and I am renewed and feel that I have adapted once more to this strange existence, without Grumpy Dave.

Anjea is going well and we are making good time. The worst is that we must run the engine for power as we’ve only seen the sun for one day so far.

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