We play the Iridium Lotto several times a day. We have an IridiumGO! Satellite phone and this runs with a phone contract that is currently on a data flat rate. So we can send emails as often and as much over the phone, and one or the other picture in the blog posts is also possible. However, they are mutilated beyond recognition if I can believe the pixel collection in the sent folder. I've changed the settings so hopefully the pictures won't be so garbled. Let's see. Other sailors have told us that they bought 600 prepaid free minutes for their Iridium phone, i.e. 10 hours. You definitely don't get across the Atlantic with that. It doesn't even get to Cape Verde, even if you just check the weather.
The phone shows the signal strength with 0 to 5 bars. You can only transfer data with 4 or 5 bars. So in the morning we start downloading the new weather forecast. The transmission breaks down regularly and then has to be restarted manually. Sometimes the signal strength is five for five minutes, but the download attempts stop anyway. After maybe 10 or 15 tries (if it goes well) we will draw the main prize in the Iridium lottery and have a new weather forecast.
Then we transfer the emails. In contrast to the weather program, the mail program tries again and again to transfer data. We have stopped 99 attempts. Usually a mail like this blog post with a small picture is transmitted after 50 to 60 attempts. Prepaid minutes would simply rush through space. I am happy to have listened to the telephone freaks and to own the flat rate. In the Caribbean, we will turn this feature off again when we sail from WiFi hotspot to WiFi hotspot.
Around 2 p.m. the wind is back. Timid at first, we see a few knots more wind on the wind instrument. Then a little stronger, we take out the genoa. The engine is still running, the additional genoa brings half a knot more speed. Then we can reduce the speed of the engine, it only supports the genoa a little so that it doesn't pop in the rolling water. At 3 p.m. we finally park it. The situation stabilizes, so we switch to Parasailor at 4 p.m.
Then there is dinner. Various vegetables that would otherwise soon perish, baked with cheese in a pasta casserole. I love our oven, especially the gratin function. The French know how to build kitchen appliances. Yes, the first vegetable will break after just two days. We are now checking it out regularly and will process it according to perishability.
The Parasailor now pulls us into the night. From the eight to ten knots of wind we get five to six knots of speed. Much better, however, is that this sail completely dampens Sissi's rolling movements. We feel like we're lying on the pier. In some marinas we were more restless. Admittedly, the Atlantic has calmed down a lot overall. It wasn't much of a starry sky today, the sky is quite cloudy.
When I go to bed the wind picks up a little. I readjust the wind vane, we are now galloping over the waves at seven knots. Sissi drives calmly, continues to lie in the water as if on the jetty. I snuggle up in the blanket and quickly find my sleep. Then I find myself next to the mattress. A gust of wind caused Sissi to take off, we are more inclined. Nice, I think, we got even more wind and turn to the other side. I get knocked off the mattress twice, then suddenly I hear a shrill call: “Jööööööörg !!!!”
Jens calls me, the Parasailor is next to Sissi in the water. The spifall is broken. We need three quarters of an hour to recover the wet cloth and convert Sissi back to Genoa operation. After that I need a beer, I have to get rid of the adrenaline. I can't go to bed like this anymore.
What options do we have? They haven't changed. Sissi is just as seaworthy as before. Just slower. We can go to Cape Verde, but there is no shipyard there that could move us in a new Spifall. We could move it in ourselves, but according to the port manual, the supply situation in Cape Verde is not good. They probably don't have the ropes they need there. The next Spifall will probably only be in the Caribbean. Wait and see what else the Atlantic has to offer us.
The next morning the SY Toboggan (MMSI 316038262) from Canada overtook us. We have a short chat over the radio. The Canadians are on their way to Cape Verde and will get there days before us. They also fished a mahi mahi in the morning. But we still have delicious steaks in the fridge.
3. Etmal: 97 nm
Position at 12 o'clock: N23 ° 54 ′ W18 ° 49 ′
471 nautical miles to Cape Verde and 2,404 nautical miles to Barbados. The total distance traveled is now 332 miles.
I never thought that Iridium was so shitty. For the next world tour I buy internet from Mr. Musk.