So here we are, three days in to the 2018 Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge and we are... pretty knackered! A phone call with Ian, the race duty officer assures us this is normal and we will get used to it. After the high of that incredible send off in La Gomera, the adrenaline has worn off and now our bodies just need to adjust to the two-hourly routine of eat, sleep, row, repeat...
Thankfully, we haven't had any seasickness yet and we are managing to eat, but our appetites aren't that big. We had planned to eat four meals a day (5,000 calories each) but it feels a bit too much at the moment. Particularly during the long nights (12 hours of darkness) when we really only want to snack and get as much sleep as we can. It's so pitch black and we can't even see the flag on our stern!
We're curious about our position and route amongst the TWAC fleet. Our first call home confirms that we are right in the middle of the pack and on a similar route to many of the others, so that's reassuring - we're not getting our navigation and weather routing wrong! We made some adjustments to our route yesterday to get around a weather system and get closer to those all important trade winds, that should push us towards Antigua.
Ian tells us the start has been quite steady this year. The conditions aren't hugely challenging, but they aren't really favouring us either, so we're plodding along at around two knots. There are some big swells which seem to come out of nowhere, so we are very mindful of safety - always clip on and never leave a hatch open.
In terms of wildlife, we hear other teams have seen dolphins and turtles. We've seen one bird - that's it! Clearly the mighty beasts of the ocean have decided that two skinny old blokes are not worth their interest! The big plus is that our wonderful boat, Pegasus is performing really well so far. We are dry, the water-maker and all the electronics are working and we haven't dropped anything overboard... fingers crossed it all stays that way.
'Mrs Grandad', Sally informed us that we appeared in the Metro and the Portsmouth News this week and our fundraising total has now hit almost £23,000 - brilliant! She also said that lots of you are avidly 'dot-watching' the YB Races tracker and commenting on our social media pages. It feels quite surreal but it is absolutely tremendous for our morale. Thank you!
Please keep telling your friends and spreading the word about two crazy old Paras in the Atlantic. We'd love to raise £250,000 for our charities and only word of mouth will do that, so please share this blog with anyone that will listen - particularly if they work for a national news organisation! In return, we'll keep row, row, rowing our boat...
The link to our donation page is: https://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/Team/GrandadsoftheAtlantic