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The Globe40 Race - GryphonSolo2: Slogging in the South Atlantic

by Joe Harris, GryphonSolo2 30 Jul 10:30 PDT
GryphonSolo2 - Slogging in the South Atlantic © Joe Harris

We are slogging our way southward in a fresh South'Easter. The wind is highly variable in both direction and strength, so we are doing our best to stay on course and go fast.

So here is the news:

1. We had a major calamity in that our giant red "Fat Boy" bean bag sprung a leak at night while we were not able to see and spewed thousands of tiny foam pellets all over the main cabin floor before we discovered it. Roger immediately declared it a "nautical disaster" of epic proportions and we set about trying to get the pellets back in the bag, which is ridiculous. Two hours later, having done the best we could, we sewed up the zipper area that had failed, but still see many white pellets all over the boat. Be careful of your bean bag spewing when you least expect it!

2. We saw the Southern Cross for the first time a few nights ago as Crosby, Stills and Nash said so eloquently. It reminded me of my solo RTW voyage in 2015, when I was at my wits end and had a major meltdown/"Cathartic Release" which some of you Gryphon Solo2 faithful may remember. It is a natural wonder to behold.

3. We turned on our watermaker (desalinator) today and nothing happened. Turns out we had major air leaks in the system and it took more than two hours to diagnose the problems and fix them. Teflon tape on fittings, lube on gaskets, and a new hose and we were back in business. The watermaker is something we cannot survive without, so we were very happy to get it going and are making water as we speak.

4. In non-maritime news, my son Emmett accepted an offer to attend and play varsity lacrosse at Swarthmore College, just outside of Philadelphia, PA. Emmett will follow in his father and older brother Griffin's footsteps in playing college lacrosse. Congratulations Emmett- for your academic and athletic achievements- I could not be more proud of you.

5. Lastly, I neglected to bring much in the way of books, movies, music or entertainment, but my daughter Sophie is going to load up an iPad and bring it to Mauritius for the next stopover. Thank you, Sophie. In the meantime, I am reading my old favorite, "The Long Way" by Bernard Moitissier, a true classic. So I leave you with this passage from the Zen Master:

"The sun rises, peaks and sets, and one day gracefully makes way for the next. I have only been gone a month; my boat and I could have been sailing forever. Time stopped long ago, I have the feeling nothing will ever change: the sea will stay the same luminous blue, the wind will never die. Joshua (GryphonSolo2) will always carve her wake for the pleasure of giving life to sheaths of spray, for the simple joy of sailing the sea under the sun and the stars."

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