Not so happy tonight. Here’s the story.

Just as I finished up last night the breeze picked up so I adjusted the rubber and was drifting right on course. Slept well, woke up early, worked out the wind had moved and the rudder needed adjusting again, unfortunately we had drifted a bit west, not to worry. Had an hours doze, back up and it was pouring down. I decided to make my porridge early, by the time it was done the storm had passed. Went out and got on with it.

Was doing ok, the wind was coming from ESE, I could just get to my 220° course. Not enough to get any of the lost ground, but I was holding course and moving well. I had to get my jacket (that’s three days in a row it’s been cold enough). Half an hour later a massive squall looms up out of the night, I row on, not wanting to loose more west. It lasts a bit longer than I would have liked but I eventually warm up again. I’m making about 2.5 knots, I could get into the low 40s with a bit of luck. About half an hour before I was due to stop for what would have been breakfast, if I hadn’t already eaten it, another squall appeared coming my way. I stayed out again, hung onto my ground and rowed on until things settled, rowed 4.5 hours.

I’ve actually stopped worrying about set sessions, I’m now just rowing to the conditions. As I have got fitter it’s less of an issue, my breaks are shorter and I seem to be able to push on without an issue.

Had a short break, answered a few texts from home and got back out in 15 minutes. Set off, 2.5 knots, looking good. Now I know the wind was supposed to lighten, it was also due to go ENE, then NE and then NE to NW overnight. Two hours in, the wind moves to SE, not ENE. I start to struggle to hold my course, I hang on for an hour thinking it will change and have my break.

Only 5 minutes for break because we are loosing ground, back at it and within 15 minutes the wind goes south. I’m rowing into a headwind and down to 1 knot. The wind stayed south or south west all day from there. 7 hours of rowing into a headwind (it did lighten later but didn’t make any difference). No 40 anything, but my big worry is I’m drifting west. The only thing that can save me is there are some massive storms about. I need one my way so it wipes out the southerly wind and leaves me some east or north east.

So, week 10.

Bit of a nightmare really, rowed 231nm, rowed to date 2868nm.

Last night I had 3473nm to go, that makes my daily made good average 41.7nm.

The boat is about 280,000 calories, 4 loo rolls, 3 tubes of sun cream, 1 bottle of washing up liquid lighter.

You’ve had to read 70 blogs and possibly as many to go.

So not a lot of good things to say about week ten, other than I can only row the conditions, I have to be patient (not easy) and get the best from everyday. I was expecting my big test to start at 6° but I think it started last week and continues this.

A few facts:

I’ve travelled 25° south from San Francisco, I still have 25° to go to Cairns.

It’s going to be tough getting through the ITCZ, believe it or not, it’s nearly 900nm to 6° south, which is “out” (I hope) , that’s a tough 900 miles.

In my mind I’m saying 10 weeks is half way in time, it’s the only way I can get my head around it. I have 392nm to go to half way proper.

That’s it for today.

John

Out

Notes:

Mike: Sumo definitely, Coe would loose but say after, “I knew I had a virus before I started but didn’t say anything”