Yesterday we had the deverstating news of the death of Sarah Young, a round the world crew mate on Icorcoal. She had been washed overboard and although recovered, could not be resuscitated. It's everyones worst fear. I had met Sarah briefly in Airlie Beach and she was the victualler for Icorcoal so we had bumped in to her in various supermarkets. She was funny, vivacious and enjoying her adventure. She will be missed by many and a sad loss to our special Clipper family. It's been an emotional 24 hours as our thoughts are with Sarah and her family and friends. We also have to keep sailing and know the dangers we face. We shall look after each other and are diligent about clipping on. A wave had caught Sarah unawares while tidying the cockpit and she was not clipped on. A split second thing. We know there has been press coverage at home and I hope they are kind to Clipper. Who knows where this will lead, however we all know and accept the risks for the sake of our adventure.
Sarah was laid to rest at sea today. A decision made as we are so far from land. At the same time across the fleet we held a minutes silence and also on GB we wrote messages which were thrown to to sea in a sealed bottle. Peter said a few words. My message was what I could remember of the 23rd psalm and some words of comfort a good friend sent with me for my journey. They have been invaluable.
So although we are all sad, we must sail on. Ocean sailing is relentless there is no hunkering down in a tent if it gets rough and tough. Perhaps 11 days to go to Seattle.We should reach the scoring gate tonight, its neck and neck with Lmax for the 3 points. We are all keen to get to shore and have our shared experience and the routine of the boat to sustain us.
I am actually having a good time. It's bloody hard but the routine of the boat passes the days quickly and the sea is such a fascinating thing. I don't think I'll ever get board watching it.
2 points at the scoring gate and now onwards to Seattle. Yesterday we passed the international date line. No red line in the sea or Dr Who style sound effects for our travel back in time moment but we are now 12 hours behind the UK and as far from Greenwich, London as possible to be in the world. So we're having two 5th of April's. If given the choice I'd pick a slightly calmer day and certainly warmer. However today is not too bad. It's warmed up from absolutely freezing to just very cold and of course everything is wet which is heat and energy sapping and pretty depressing. Socks and gloves line the engine room but still take an age to dry. We are all tired. My sleeping bag is amazing and at least keeping me dry and warm for part of the time. I'm mother today so a day in the galley and a night in bed. The guys on deck are dealing with rain, sleet and sometimes hail. Roll on Seattle.