It’s Veterans Day here in the good old USofA and Remembrance Day in England and South Africa and I am sure in a few other places around the world. It’s a time for all of us to give a thought to all who have served their country, and especially to those who didn’t make it home. I made it home. This is not a political post but one of my favorite quotes is by Samuel Johnson. “Patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel.” I go along with that. People will do some absurd thing under the banner of patriotism, but enough about that. I digress.
I note that some of the boats in the McIntyre Ocean Globe Race have slipped over that imaginary line into the Roaring Forties. Pen Duick VI, Translated 9, Maiden and Spirit of Helsinki are all roaring along with fairly decent boat speeds. Nothing brilliant but a decent way to eat up miles.
Now, let me explain. There is a certain something that happens when you dip below 40 degrees south. For a start there is a change in the smell of the air. They will notice it. The air is more dense down there. Wetter, if you know what I mean, and there is very little sun to dry it out. It’s good for those who have sinus problems… Keeps them lubricated. That and the occasional wave in the face. White Shadow seem to have found themselves in a bit of a hole in the ground, also known as not much wind. They are moving along at a little over 5 knots. Outlaw, ever the outlaws, are doing a little better at 7 knots. Then there is Triana, Galiana WithSecure and Evrika all in the same weather pattern doing ok. I think that they must be rowing. I don’t think that rowing is disallowed in the OGR because their speeds are up and they are in the same wind pattern as White Shadow.
The weather ahead is a little ‘awkward’ which is exactly what my first girlfriend told me when I tried to kiss her on our first date. I digress (again ADHD). They are about to get introduced to some fairly strong north easterlies but in a day or so there will be a transition to fairly light south westerlies. That’s when the fun begins.
Just one more quick story before I go and rake leaves. Our local coffee shop Dunkin’ Donuts offers free coffee to veterans on Veterans Day. I rarely drink coffee but free is free. I would get a cappuccino and after the lovely server had handed me the coffee I would say, “thanks, but I was a veteran on the other side.” Mic drop.