Around The World Voyage : Commentary : Leg 2

February 7, 2002

Local Time: 13:30
Position: 05.43' North - 090.42' East
Speed: 7.2 knots
Course: 266 degrees magnetic

During the Northeast Monsoon season - between December and March - the Indian Ocean is famous for its consistency. It's a westbound sailor's dream with steady winds of 10 to 20 knots from the northeast. We've just clocked another over 170-mile day, maintaining an average of 7 .1 knots running at a modest 1,575 rpm.

Leaving Phuket I started the trip drawing off of the starboard fuel tank for the first 24 hours and then switched to the port for the past 48 hours. I'm just now seeing the fuel level occasionally appear in the port sight gauge. I'm back on the starboard tank now and expect to even the two tanks by tomorrow at noon. We then should be able to accurately gauge our consumption over the first ninety-six hours of running. I think at this point we're burning well under a total of 3 GPH - that includes running the generator continuously since starting.

The voyage up from Singapore to Phuket took slightly less than four days and now we've been at sea for three. I feel we're entering into that magic time in a passage where everyone is getting into a comfortable routine of watch standing and enjoying the abundance of free time to relax, read, write or whatever we choose. We've adjusted to the motion and sounds of the ship and for me personally, after leaving her in Hawaii, I'm regaining the high level of confidence in the boat and systems that can only come after a few days of operation.

We have divided our watch system into three, two-hour watches between midnight and 6:00 am; then between 6:00 am and midnight we run three-hour watches. This system allows plenty of sleep and the consistency of the schedule is easy to adjust to. Tomorrow we will have to once again change the clocks back by one hour - a process repeated after each 15 degrees of longitude crossed.

We've had success in tuning in various short-wave broadcast that are available and have been keeping up to speed on world events through the BBC in London. They broadcast on a number of frequencies and depending upon the local time of day there is an appropriate channel to select. In the morning it comes in clear at lower band wave and higher ones as the day progresses.


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