We're in Senegal! after a week long sail. It was exactly 7 days, almost to the hour. The total trip was almost 900 miles and we had pretty good winds. We we're able to sail almost the whole way, and only had to run the motors a few hours a day to keep the batteries full. For several days, the wind was coming directly behind, and we put out the sails and only had to move them twice in 7 days. Quite a difference from the MED, where the winds seem to shift hour by hour.
Lily and Emma spent the first 3 days working on cross-stitch projects, then switched to coloring and making wooden puzzles we bought for passages. Most evenings, while we were charging batteries, we took the laptop out and watched a movie, while we took turns jumping up and checking for other boats. There was a 3 day stretch where we didn't see anything, pretty lonely.
The nights were spectacular, no moon, and zillions of stars. There was also a lot of phosphoresence in the water, and it often looked like a glowing trail as we went, amazing. Levi and Maggie and I got into a rhythm, taking turns for night watches, keeping the sails trimmed, and watching for other boats.
Emma and Levi spent yesterday on the final approach to Senegal making our courtesy flag, out of some scraps we found on the boat. A little sewing and coloring a star and we're 'official'!
We're waiting here for some friends on another boat and we're planning to sail to the Gambia river together. We're sending updates from a satellite phone because internet is really hard to come by.
We'll post again soon!