20.03.08 – making northing

We’re SW of the Falklands in cold, gray and uncomfortable seas. Not too much wind though, and we’re going only slowly with reefed main and staysail. After some spectacular vomiting I slept well and am determined at least to write one short email between heaves.

I have been hanging over the stern attending to the wind vane apparatus and filled my boots with water. It is fixed though. We have the engine on idle so at least the cabin is warm. Trouble with seasickness is that it makes you feel so depressed. At least I have been able to keep working, but with difficulty.

Ian has been dogged in his efforts during a difficult night – the Aries paddle came off, a gas bottle came loose on after deck, and we had numerous sail changes. His enthusiasm is worth bottling. He’s very happy in the galley, but I have to watch him on deck.

Now we are 100 miles west of the Falklands, headed for Mar del Plata at the mouth of the River Plate. My Lemaire mal de mer abated overnight and there is talk of beef stew, which Ian does exceedingly well.

After a 24 hours of light airs we began sailing. Close fetching gently in a steady northeaster, with big SW and SE swells quietly arguing with one another. The boat surrounded by seabirds – wandering and black-browed albatross, giant petrels, pintadoes and tiny storm petrels. Now and again there is a hint of sun. By tonight we will be out of the fearsome fifties and into the roaring forties. We have another 8 days at sea, conservatively speaking. Thoughts of a still boat, a hot shower and beefsteak at Mar del Plata are tucked away for later.

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