Happy rowing day 24 and birthday countdown day 5! I'll try to answer some of your questions today as I sit in a cabin that is barely moving! That's right- the wind and waves have virtually disappeared and we have just been able to row (and row, and row). Now that we feel like we are In a groove and (hopefully) near the tradewinds, I am starting to feel like I need to really be present and absorb every moment, whether it's good, painful or boring because it will be over before we know it. Sounds strange to most of you, I'm sure, but one of the reasons I was excited about this challenge is that I'm forced to just be cool with where I'm at, and the fact that I'm going to be here for a while. I figure that if I can master this environment, sf should be a piece of cake. I am at peace with life here but it's easy to think about home or the finish when you aren't focused on each wave. That said, we have been planning our reunion with Teddy and with our good friends, who we miss dearly, with play-by-play detail. I also get particularly excited about chatting with people and take every opportunity to engage with other boats on the radio, they, however, seem not to be as lonely as me. Today was hot and we dangled our legs over the edge of the deck during each break. We poured water on our heads and shirts every so often in order to keep cool on the oars. Evening offered respite from the heat, as we hit our milage minimum, the clouds grew dark and it began to rain. Soon we were complaining how cold we were! Though we don't seem to be dropping tons of weight, our bodies are definitely feeling the wear and tear. I'm having issues with my shoulder now, but I can still pull. Sami has felt a few twinges in his back but is monitoring it closely. Overall though, we both feel pretty great- certainly better than we have after some stage races! We really don't fantasize about food, which we usually do on longer workouts. We have been on a four hour ride and already would be talking about what we will eat at home by the second hour. Out here, neither of us is too hungry, and rather than trading and negotiating for each others food, like we're were in the beginning, we are trying to get the other person to eat our treats. I uncovered a valuable stash of pecan butter packets in my food locker last week and rather than using it as currency, I try to get Sami to take them here and there. He has also given me some of the most precious items on board, a block of cheese, extra apple chips, and other items :). One of the images below is the electric panel which is virtually useless at this point. Mr fix-it is going to try to get our auto pilot working in a couple of days. Pray for his safety ;). The battery monitors are showing info, but it's incorrect. Our small battery monitor shows 87 amp hrs even though it's max charge is only 20. The other picture is Sami giving his wooly a pep talk...or was that a pet talk? Ok, something to make you laugh: I happened to look outside when Sami was doing clean-up (it's nearly impossible not to) just in time to see him standing with one arm on the rail and the other swinging shorts overhead like a lasso (sp?) and a look of glee. This, it seems, is his clean pants victory dance. It happens every day :), thank god. Divorcemeter zero.