Week 1: Las Palmas-Martinique.
Rough seas with wind up to 30 knots, big gentle blue waves in sunshine, day long torrential rain, outside a mass of wet, dense greyness, hard to make out where sea ends and sky begins. We’ve had it all and slowly had enough. The big-picture weather data (GRIB file) is analysed daily and based on this we decide to adjust our course. Heading south to escape the unstable weather, we finally get our first sight of those fluffy, gentle, cotton-wool, trade wind, cumulus clouds  in blue skies that should accompany us to Martinique.

The sunshine is an incredible boost to morale as we now spend more time out on deck and soak up the sun. Mr ST promptly catches a 9.5 kg tuna on which we shall feast (sashimi, tartar, steaks) for the next days. Moving southwards we also hit a huge field of no wind (yayy, no movement for a change! But also oh dear, no movement…).

Nights are spent in 2 hour watch shifts, gazing in amazement at stars, the moonlight turning the calm sea mercury silver. Days are spent reading, checking wind data, eating, lulling in the sun. When a second fish is caught we take advantage of the brief stop and all plunge into the deep, warm water (26.4 degrees) splashing and laughing, joyous at the incredible sensation of swimming in 5000 meter deep water in the middle of the atlantic!

And yet no wind. The easterly tradewinds are still even further south of our position and we have to resort to the dreaded engine to make distance throughout the night. Today, 14:30 UTC finally there! The first gusts of 10 knots East wind, spinnaker is raised and we bear further westerly on course to Martinique. These are wonderful days.