• JM BUSHA 54 Sailing Team

Day 13: Radio Bantering 

Lunch was amazing, a huge change from the Pro-Vita's and cracker-bread that usually accompanied the sun's halfway commute across the sky. I wasn't at all curios as to how we actually got such nice food halfway across the ocean, and still managed to keep it fresh. And frankly was way too preoccupied with the lunchtime aroma to Care. A roast chicken and an assortment of vegetables filled the Boats saloon. I lent over to Hamlet to ask for some salt, To which he replied "It's time for your shift". I stared at him blankly. Confusion plastered across my face "Its not a shift, It's a watch" Michaela retorted.

I woke with a jolt. Hamlets face looked at me from the end of my bunk, his face lit up a rosy shade of red from the lights inside. He was calling me up on deck. I could hear Michaela berating him from outside. "we're not casual labourers" she moaned. and carried on with her tirade about useless sailing vernacular. I wiped the thick layer drewl from the side of my mouth, and the pillow. No doubt that the salivation was a result of my amazing dream. I felt sorry for whoever has to sleep on this pillow after I went on watch.

As I walked outside, I was greeted by the most beautifull scene. A Bright moon hung low in the sky, painting the waves with a watercolour indigo tint. The brightness of the moon a stark contrast to the dark star specled sky. The wake of the boat was a few meters behind the stern, indicating we we're moving at some speed. I was handed the helm and went about my routine of sailing the boat as quick as possible to Rio.

Just as day started to break Tawanda (my usual watch partner) spotted a weird light on the horison. It was a pale white colour, and I shrugged it off as being a star. It was moving though... maybe a Planet? Both Tawanda and I, who barely know the difference between Astronomy and Astrology, were perplexed.

Curiosity got the best of us and Tawanda went down to check the AIS. "It's Moji!" he exclaimed. Loud enough to wake the entire crew. They had obviously gybed onto starboard, and were heading north. The crew we're ecstatic. We hadn't had sight of any of our other competitors since the start, and the fact that it was our rival for line honours made it that much better. I gave Tawanda the Helm and ran to the VHF, to see if we could make contact. Our greetings were met with literal radio silence. Fortunatley after a couple of minutes and a few failed attempts, the radio gave a crackly reply. The transcript of the conversation went something along the lines of this:

Me: Moji Moji, this is the yacht Ciao Bella, Ciao Bella. do you copy?

Moji: This is the yacht Moji, we hear you loud and clear.

Me: *said with audible excitement* Requesting permission to pass you on the inside

Moji: uhm... ... permission denied.

Me: Requesting Permission to beat you to Rio.

Moji: With my deepest regrets, Permission denied.

Moji: Unless you would be willing to trade? Do you have Ice on your Boat?

Me: No, unfortunatley we ran out of Ice 2 weeks ago

A little catch up session ensued and before we knew it they had crossed our bow and were out of sight.

The sight of one of our rivals had revitalised the crew, and i haven't heard the winch stop grinding since.

We estimate another 9 days to Rio at our current speed.

Full send

- Ryan Robinson

© 2019 by JM BUSHA 54 Sailing Team