Among the many courses taken in preparation for our journey, I had completed a radio communication course, where I learned about marine radio protocol and brushed up on the phonetic alphabet. It sure came in handy on the passage, and brought back memories of my Dad working the net in his Ham radio shack at home – CQ CQ CQ, this is Victor Echo Three Echo Bravo India. Miss you Dad – you’d be proud of me now, carrying on the tradition!
The Caribbean 1500 Rally has a twice daily radio net. It was a great way to stay connected with the other boats, to feel you weren’t “alone out there”. It even proved that old-school is cool when our satellite email system didn’t come through with the weather on the first day. We soon had that working, but continued following the net for the routing information, to hear how the other boats were faring, and for the chat, which included “fish stories” and the “motto of the day”, my favourite being “Cruising on a sailboat is the most expensive way to travel 3rd class”.