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June 26, 2006 11:36 PM

Magic Post from the Ocean

Cam and RichardTHE OCEAN - I got an e-mail from the boat. It's not Ryan, its his skipper Neville. It seems that they've got a little more technology than on the previous boat. Sounds like things are going well. I actually spoke with Ryan the other day before he left and he wanted to thank all of you who have sent in donations and purchased shirts. -jon

From the boat:

To those with us in mind,

Blithe Spirit and its crew of Richard, Ryan, Cameron and Neville departed Bora Bora (16 deg. 29 min. South by 151 deg. 45 min. West) on the afternoon of Wednesday 21st of June. On the Tuesday we redeemed the "Bonds" for Cameron and Ryan to sever our ties with French Polynesia. On the Wednesday morning the crew hired bicycles and cycled around Bora Bora whilst the skipper stayed on board completing navigation chores (finding new rocks to hit). Our journey began with perfect sailing conditions with a close reach giving Blithe Spirit an on-course speed of between ten and twelve knots with just the mainsail and jib. This was replaced by a calm and then a strong wind from the West (on the nose). There were violent squalls and zero visibility so we deployed the sea anchor for the night and experienced a disturbing sleep to the noisy crashing of waves into the boat. The sea anchor worked extremely well and the crew were quite expert in both their deployment and recovery of the sea anchor. As ever, nothing is perfect and a "washing bucket" rope (beautifully crafted by a proud Bruce) managed to catch the port propeller and we will have a little swimming to do when the seas are calm. After a very disappointing day's run of 95 miles, we had to motor sail slowly all day through a mixture of calms and turbulent squalls. This evening the squalls have disappeared to the south and tonight we can see stars. Blithe Spirit is sailing leisurely at seven knots with a full main and jib on a calm sea and light winds (5/10 knots). Our communications through Sailmail have been intermittent; our two nearest stations are both very far away (Honolulu and Australia). Our ability to get good weather reports are largely dependent upon Sailmail. Today was a good communication day and we can expect light but favourable winds for the next four days. Our target destination for this trip is Suva in Fiji; however we may stop at one of the intermediate islands enroute. All is well on-board and the total strangers who joined Blithe Spirit at Papeete are now solid friends and a good crew. Best regards to everyone with us in mind and spirit, Richard, Ryan, Cameron, Neville