Since Columbus wanted to sail to India the other, west-way and instead found the land in between, people have been sailing this trade to the West Indies. We are just another boat in a long, long row sailing on the passadwind. Still – you haven’t done it before you have.
So how was it for us?
We loved it, we felt that we where living out there. We could have gone on many more days.
It is magic to be in the element of wind and waves for so long time. We where surfing on a massive wind and wavemovement. We didn’t see a boat on the whole trip, just four on the plotter. The context is huge – horizonts all around and many thousands meter deep, dark blue water under us. First it was bit scary – so much can happen during the way and there is really no turning back when you set off. Quite soon we felt that it was working – the waves carried us even when they got higher. And when the wind increased we just rolled in our genua a bit. The beauty and strenght in the nature took over.
We are still landing in that we have been sailing the two of us over Atalantic. We came here (Martinique) in the dawn and we felt like we have entered a new land. The light was different, the water was warmer (28°), the view was also different – a huge bay with a lot of sailingboats on anchor surrounded by green soft hills. Quite amazing!
It is special to travel so long time to reach a place – it takes less than a day to fly here and for us it took two weeks or sex and a half month from Stockholm.
Did everything went well?
Yes, we have a wonderful boat, an Amel Supermaramu, built exactly for the purpose to go long distances on oceans. She went very nicely in the deep waves. We will have someone look over our genua (the only sail we used) as parts of the sunprotection started to loosen at the bottom of it. We also have some shafing on the sheets – we have bought extra for the future.
How did you managage on the two of you?
As we have a boat that goes on autopilot it is more about staying fit and well rested for the night watches. The sailing it self was quite easy as the tradingwind where steady blowing from north east and as mentioned no boats out there, so not very much to check out for.
But you never know! We checked the radar every half hour and on the second part of the journey it was squalls (heavy wind and rain for a short while) coming mainly night time.
The all the time rolling was the hardest part to get used too. Made us very present to every single movement. We both took seasickplastic the night before leaving. They holds for three days and that was enough to get used. We bring several extra types – Calma to take when you already feel seasick and another brand from Canarias with coffein (as others makes you tired). Just as a security. I am very happy with this. Part of the rolling is all the noice from things moving in the boat. It is a never ending story to get it silenced.
We are very aware of the importance of sleep and rest, so we prioritize that all the time.
We do have fixed scadules for the night watches. Three hours, starting 22-01, 1-4, 4-7, 7-10 in the morning. If we can not sleep we rest. We take a shower and we dress off before sleeping. We always take at least one nap daytime. We do bring sleepingpills as well, never used, just in case.
I did prepared food in advance to just warm up. That meant no one needed to cook in the rolling sea (makes you seasick easily) especially in the beginning. We have a pressurecocker with a lid that can not jump off. What ever you do in the kitchen you have to guard it every second. I can really recommend bringing ”foodthermos”. I make porridge in them for breakfast and cook rise in them for dinner. We also brought dry food (like for campers) that you just add some hot water to and let stand for ten minutes. Just in case. We didn’t drink alcohol, just a lot of water, coffe and tea.
Bananas lasted one-two weeks even if we bought them green. We frooze the last ones and found out it was really tasty to make an easy smoothie by mixing them (using a fork) and then add spirulina, chia, ginger and other great stuff. Next time I will bring more.
What do you do all the day? Isn’t it boring?
Days goes fast! Not boring at all. We live on board. We want to have it as smooth as possible every day. We are not in hurry. We prefer slower if that means safer.
Of course we check weather – many times a day, we adjust the sails, we check things, we make new water, warm water and electricity three times a day.
Arthur and I approach it differently. He is the captain – securing everything goes the way it should. I always have different projects going on – writing diary and other texts, reading and taking photos. When I read I choose the thickest and most deep book I can as I have the precense and time to read quite a lot.
On this journey I was studying the sun and the waves every morning and night. I am sitting on the first row just drowning in the big silent light show. I am with all there is around us. It’s in a way as being on a silent retreat in a magic surrounding. At the night we had the moon shining over us. I am learning to trust, especially the big waves – they will carry us with care even when they grow higher and stronger. When you start witnessing you see more and more. I feel very grateful.
Start 19 Dec 2019 from Las Palmas.
Made a stop in Mindelo, Cap verde some days.
Started again 1 Jan 2020
Arrived Martinique 15 Jan
Distance travelled: 887+2108 nm (tot 2995), from Stockholm 6517 nm
Hours on motor: 25
Winds: 15-30 knots, mostly around 20
Waves: 2-4 m
Speed: 6-8 knots