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Apsara's Thanksgiving

November 27, 2003     21 12.2 N; 25 48.7 W.  

It is 10:00 pm, the wind is blowing a healthy 25 knots from the east and the sky is full of stars. The sound of the sea rushing past the hull is lulling half the crew to sleep after our Thanksgiving at sea. Carmen, our French chef, cooked her first T-giving meal tonight. As the sun was setting we sat in the cockpit and enjoyed our oven roasted turkey, stuffing, mashed & truffled potatoes, some fancy little French appetizer and a bottle of red split 7 ways. General attire was barefeet, shorts and light shirts. Our pumpkin pie was interrupted by a small squall that sent most of us below.

Now Apsara is scooting along at 10.1 knots with the wind on the beam and bro-in-law, John, driving with surprising skill considering he has no experience sailing at night. We will be rotating the driving through out the night since we lost our auto pilot yesterday. When the pilot quit, we had a minor crash gybe that damaged the boom fittings and forced us to go into repair mode for 3 hours. Everything is now better than new except for the pilot. We have been on the sat phone through the day and John has displayed a heretofore unknown (to me) facility with electronics. Between him and French speaking Carmen we are making some progress but I am resigned to having to hand steer the remaining 2100 miles - good practice for all.

We are just over 4 days into the passage and have passed the 25% mark - unlikely that we will make it in 16 days since the winds are forecast to be lighter next week. Everyone is feeling near 100% and having a great time. The hammocks in the saloon are full of fresh fruit and vegetable and they swing gently with the waves. Sometimes it feels a little tight with eight aboard, but mostly I am enjoying having everyone aboard that we do.

Hope you all have a great turkey day and we are thinking of you tonight.

s/v Apsara

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