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Tension between the three great empires

A little like Groundhog Day, it is once again the Mongols' turn on mother
watch following another cracking 48 hours sailing where we've been seeing
speeds over 10 knots as we plough further north trying to get ahead of the
fleet and the weather.

As seems to be the theme for this leg we have had a wide range of weather
from 23 knots of wind and a crystal clear view of the way ahead down to only
a light breeze and heavy fog. As we continue our passage north the
temperature continues to drop and the crew have been becoming quietly
concerned that the skipper has actually gone rogue. With clever use of
Photoshop to create convenient weather systems so as to fool the crew, there
is a theory that he is in fact leading us on a quest to full fill his life
long goal to swim with polar bears in the wild; one of the few things the
three great empires agree on is an ill fated ambition. Thankfully today has
seen a course change to the east and although the temperature still seems to
be dropping the need for a mutiny to keep us on track for Le Havre is
fading.

Today has been the double celebration of Callum Buchanan's ship birthday and
Halloween. Making use of some of the remaining fresh fruit and helping to
stave off scurvy, toffee apples for all were provided for lunch.

Meanwhile a rift is starting to form between the Mayans and the other two
great empires on board with the Mayans irritatingly chiseled, sun drenched
bodies; ability to win at every quiz to date; hold a plank for eternity; and
their perfect hair and well shaped eye brows. Although slightly feminine it
must be said. It turns out that perhaps putting three of the greatest
empires together on a boat and sailing it into the Atlantic may not have
been the best idea, only time will tell of the ultimate consequence.

As a result the other empires have begun to seek competitions beyond looks,
intelligence and strength where they can prosper over their fellow empire,
Initially they have concluded that eating competitions may be the source of
the victory they are looking for. As such an inter empire apple bobbing
competition was held post lunch, under the illusion it was in relation to it
being Halloween, with each empire fielding their best athlete. Whereas both
the Vikings' Olly 'The Beast' Jones and Mayans' Theo 'Chiseled' Darlow chose
to pick at the apple like a quizzical wood pecker to try and tempt it out of
the bucket the Mongol's illustrious leader George 'Danger' Hopkins threw
caution to the wind and, at the risk of drowning himself, pinned the apple
to the bottom of the bucket. He came back to the surface in under 6 seconds
in what looked like a scene crossed between a breaching whale, something
from Baywatch and a well prepared hog roast, and stood triumphant to take
the win.

With a whiff of mutiny in the air and concern that the Mongols leader may be
getting above his station the Mate, Andy Wright, has dispatched him to the
aft deck with a pile of the Mate's clothes to be washed and pressed.

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Rona returns to Universal and familiar waters!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The 21st of August on Rona 2 saw the Mayans on mother watch again. Leaving the hard job of motoring from Swanage Bay to Portsmouth to the Vikings and Mongols. Luckily moods were high as last night around 10 pm Ed Clark's parents kayaked out, whilst we were at anchor in Swanage Bay in the heavy rain to see their precious child and drop off a care package of Ed's mums famous flapjacks. Something that the crew has been looking forward to eagerly all day. The day also consisted of a trip up the mast for crew member Theo Darlow to retrieve the burgee and fix some minor problems with the head of the mainsail. He later commented, "it's a lot higher than it looks", yet maintains he wishes he'd been able to go higher. Whilst Theo was up the mast, occasionally, dropping things on his unsuspecting crew who had winched him up the mast, Rona 2 was skillfully steered up the Hamble River to Universal Shipyard. On arrival at Universal the torn spi