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Duck and Grouse



I felt a lot fresher after a wash, shave and change of clothes late yesterday morning. Our speed picked up through the afternoon as the wind increased ‘til we were doing 4+ knots. By 2100 with 25 knots forecast for later I was a bit worried about the yard which becomes quite bowed in stronger winds so took the main down. We went from 4+ knots to 2.5 which was disappointing but after some trimming of the course and sail were back up at about 3 knots. It meant that I could sleep without worrying about the rig. This morning we’re doing mostly 3+ knots and I’ll put the main up again this afternoon once the wind’s died down a little.

The numbers for yesterday were: 78 miles logged and 76 made good, with 257 left to go to Campbeltown or 280 home.

The sea is up again and so it’s noisy again with breaking waves hitting us occasionally, less so than last night now but back to being uncomfortable. When working on deck I find myself shouting at the elements when they throw the boat over on her ear, I shout ‘go away’ (possibly marginally less politely), but have found I’ve been hurting my ears with the volume I manage to achieve, particularly if the hood is up on my oilskins. It doesn’t help but makes me feel better.


I had a tin of ‘Confit de Canard’ last night, a present from Hungary, I vaguely remember Katharine telling me what it actually was. I’d forgotten this and had thought that it would be a duck leg casserole. I did boiled potatoes and cabbage with it. On opening the tin it was difficult to empty into the saucepan being, as it was, thick white fat and some meat. This is entirely what it is, thick white duck fat and duck legs. It was fine but there was a saucepan full of duck fat left at the end and with the deteriorating conditions I didn’t want to risk it’s going all over the cabin so ended up dumping it over the side. Had I remembered what Katharine had told me about it I’d probably have been more creative with it and fried the potatoes in the duck fat or something, and I’d have been prepared to save the fat for future use in something.


Well, if things go well I should be picking up a phone signal tomorrow. I’ve had the Irish coastguard almost coming through on the VHF which I’m surprised about because my aerial is now on the cabin top so very low and VHF Radio is line of sight so I’d imagine my range would not be that great, I suppose that they have their aerial up a mountain somewhere which will help.


Hoping things continue without drama. It looks likd Ertan in Lazy Otter is heading back to Europe, I’ve not heard from him, he keeps his other boat in Spain and lives in Bournemouth which is where I suspect he’ll head to.

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