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Crew member on GBR1429L British Soldier

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DAY 5 - FRI 27 AUG 2010 - 1000 HRS

We're back! Well, at least the satphone is. After launching itself across the saloon, bouncing off the galley stove and gently waking an offwatch crewman, it has singularly failed to behave. Spread over the cabin sole in about a hundred bits, with a Royal Electrical Mechanical Engineerng officer (who professes to have tinkered with motorbikes in the past) and a Troop leader from the Light Dragoons clutching a torque wrench claiming that he's a dab hand at replacing tracks thrown from his Scimitar light recce tank, somehow between them they managed to fix it.

A reasonably frustrating night last night waiting for an anticipated wind shift to back to the west which eventually materialised albeit 6 hours late. So much for free weather GRIB files - we want our money back! Currently laying Muckle Fludda on 310 degrees close hauled at 7.9 knots. GPS is giving us an ETA of early evening, although that's very much dependant on this wind holding out in strength and direction. Looking forward to the next leg - there's only a certain amount of oil rigs and harassing safety boats that you can take before it all becomes a tadge monotomous. A beamy/broad reach across the N Atlantic to St Kilda would be nice....

Conditions on board are pretty good, although we're all becoming adept at doing things with a permanent angle of heel whilst the boat pounds throw the waves. Foreheads wedged against the bulkhead in the heads is painful but prevents unnecessary spillage; swinging from grab rail to grab rail is pretty fast, whilst clinging on to the guardrail with your teeth has become standard practice. Suffice to say that the majority are becoming gymnasts, whilst the slightly older are creaking and groaning.

That's it - my fingers have numbed on this rubber keypad. So far we've logged 725 miles through the water in just under 4 days, whilst GPS shows us as having completed 647 NM with another 1153 to go. So if my infantry maffs is correct, that puts us just over a third of the way round.

Skip (neither a gymnast nor contortionist)

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