We caught up with the trade winds during the wee hours of Sunday.
They are blowing at an obliging 30 knots on average, from 110°. With the staysail up and two reefs in the main, Gitana 13 is cruising along magnificently on an azure blue sea. They're having a ball at the helm, despite taking spray as if from a fire hose. Result: 615 miles under our belt. This is to be expected: this wind angle and sail configuration always add up to excellent progress on the ocean.
Comfort onboard has obviously improved, apart from volleys of spray and big waves. We are in a real shaker, and the simplest act, like getting dressed, requires some technical prowess to avoid getting tossed from one side of the hull to the other. The same is true in the kitchen. The only culinary act possible is to heat water, which is just fine since that's all we need to do. Nevertheless, let me take a moment to mention the food provided last year by Domaine du Mont d'Arbois, which seriously improved the fare during our attempt on the Route de la Découverte. That food—enough to make even the dullest palate salivate—was unfortunately not an option on this trip given our route.
We've been sailing on port tack since we left NY, and every night we have been graced by the moon's appearance. During the night from Sunday to Monday, this precious navigational aid shone with its full force. The ocean has changed from azure blue to a silvery grey, adding to the beauty of the spectacle. We're enjoying this fully now, as the trades will begin to ease tomorrow. Tomorrow night we'll start nearing the Doldrums. We're gently adopting the ideal trajectory to cross this zone, but we all know that it remains unpredictable.