Today has been quite exciting and very busy due to the fact it is race day. There has been lots of sail activity and we all have incredibly sore arms from heaving those ropes!
In the morning after a delicious breakfast (cereal and toast followed by bacon, beans and eggy bread), we had a particularly efficient 'happy hour' as unfortunately we hadn't been able to do it the day before because of some tacking practice.
After a quick 'smoko' (coffee break) we had a sail setting talk from Jean the Mate in preparation for the afternoon - the start of the Tall Ships 2008 race. Hopefully most of us now understand how all the sails work and everyone loved the colour coordination on the diagrams (very girly)! The talk was really good; however, a few people were struggling against the effects of not having had enough sleep and the nice warm, comfy lower mess!
In the afternoon it was all hands on deck for a good few hours to put up the sails and attempt to cross the start line in time. We had a few anxious moments where the T'gallant got stuck in its roller and 'Bob'(aka Catherine the Bosun's Mate) had to climb the mast to try and unstick it - we were cutting the timing quite close by this stage and didn't want to be late for the start.
In the end we made perfect time and even crossed the start line in third place which was very impressive considering there are lots of bigger, faster ships than us! The atmosphere was great and there was a big cheer when the horn went off to mark the official start. We also got some great photos as there were many ships surrounding us and there were brilliant scenic views, particularly for those who went aloft to slacken the buntlines.
Most of the crew sunbathed on deck after all the hard work we had done and it was really nice to relax for a while, listening to the sound of the waves and wind.
Overall today has been great - very busy and very successful - afterall, we are Guides!
Aft Stbd aka Team Zoe ( Zoe W/L, Lydia, Tamsin, Lesley, Chloe, Hannah, Fiona McC, Alice, Jane and Heather)
Update By: Aft Starboard