Posted by: Helena Smalman-Smith | December 20, 2011

Day 16: A good hair day

Here on Didi all is right with the world, most particularly because H was finally able to wash her hair for the first time since we started! It’s amazing what you can do with 1 litre of water (and she managed to wash her shorts in the rinse as well).

The calmer conditions just make everything so much easier – rowing, living, fixing things. We’re pleased to report that the Jetboil has survived its drenching, though it’s now living in the cabin with us, rather like Minnie, a cat our neighbours acquired, whom they initially planned to have sleep in a nice little hutch in the garden, but who rapidly persuaded them than indoors would be more suitable for her…

We took a couple of hours off rowing in the afternoon to fix various minor things that had broken – H’s main task was to sort out our life jackets which we had stupidly stowed in net bags attached to the walls of our footwell – conveniently right outside the cabin door, we’d thought. The flaw in this plan is that the foot well tends to get 6″ to a foot of water in it at night as waves break over the boat (especially in the rough weather), and this invariably causes our little bin caddy (v.handy for shoving finished plastic packaging into when it’s windy) to float and then fall over, and then little bits of food get into the water in the footwell, and the result has been a total gungy mess all over the life jackets. So we’ve had to open them up and totally scrub them out, and once they’ve finally dried, they’ll have to live in the cabin with us too, along with the jetboil. It’s getting crowded in here!

To add to the general niceness of today, H’s snack pack included a marzipan bar from our skiffing friend Declan – there are only 2 of these, so there were squeals of delight when this came out of the hatch!

We presume our mileage will be much less today – but they’re such pleasant miles compared with the rodeo of the last 2 weeks, that we don’t mind. Sooty told us this afternoon that we’ve done 500nm – this means I can break out the dried strawberries from Claire, Duncan and Laura Sparrow in Sydney tomorrow – our 500nm treat!

And thanks to Giles for a good version of “row, row your boat” mentioning “don’t panic” on a bar of choc today – “panic slowly” is the mantra we learned on our ocean courses, so your song is exceptionally apt!

Horse – er, liked your lexicon, but how did you do at trials? Wish you could have cooked a chicory casserole for tea – I had rehydrated Chilli, which is a mistake I won’t be repeating.

Clintos – Chris M is doing us exceptionally detailed 4 day forecasts covering wind and waves in a predetermined format that packs a lot into 160 chars (far better than I did for you), but thanks for thinking of us from EC2… And unlike C2, we’re not terribly capable of rowing our way out of weather trouble.

Heidi (and Liz) you don’t need to put your email address at the start of messages – it wastes characters and we can’t feasibly reply to you individually. We weren’t sure where your 2 front teeth came into anything? Hope they’re still attached to you. Did you beat Ben in a real velodrome or is this a computer game we haven’t heard of?

Lovely to hear from you Liz. And K&D.

Hope Ian W is feeling better and is raring for the slopes.

Have been listening to more Harry P today, but we will get on with our Christmas programme soon.

Tommy – you’re a gem, thanks for messaging us all.

Are there any more details available about what happened to Tom and Tomski of Team Tom?

Thanks to Baz and Keith for jokes (liked the one about the feather and the chicken, but won’t be repeating it here as our parents read this). Santa fighting the Spanish Armada at Plymouth Hohoho,,,, groan!

We are so touched at the support you’re all giving us – hope you have the stamina to keep it going!

And finally MANY thanks to Eric, Lisa and Chris of our land team for endlessly sending ocean info, and sorting out blog spelling and comments – it’s such a relief to have you on board! (P.s. Chris and Rog – it’s OK, I’ve worked out that the scarry safe collar on the EPIRB will hold it in properly and we couldn’t suffer a loss of it like BW did).


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