I’m now fairly confident that I have got the hang of sun sight reduction, sun run sun plots, moon and planet sights and have some beautiful fixes on my plotting sheets, a couple of Sun positions I am super proud of, a lovely fix using Venus and Polaris and another using the Sun and Moon since they were both up at the same time. It is so rewarding when the sums all work out and I get a position which is mighty close to where we are.
Shipboard life goes in a constant rotation, the watches rotate every four hours at night, and once per person during the day, days and nights merge together, concept of day and date is only relevant for navigation. The world keeps turning, which means the sky keeps turning, the sun and moon are set in their rotations, the earth is spinning around her axis, while she wobbles on it too and slowly declines south with each day that passes.
I have literally spent most of the trip watching the world spin round through the eye-piece of my sextant and measuring her movements as she goes. It is a wonderfully satisfying experience when it all comes together.
Every time I go on deck and stare at the ocean, or the sky or the stars, I think of Columbus, Magellan, Bligh, Cook, Worsley, Shackleton, and all the sailors of old whose view would have been exactly the same as mine is now. The celestial bodies haven’t changed much, neither has that horizon.
Although even in this great wilderness man has left his great legacy. The sailors of generations gone before would have seen more marine life and no plastic in the ocean.