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Monday, 29 June 2020

Mid-Atlantic blue

Dear Luke. Thinking about the Voyage to America I wonder if there's a chance of getting colour footage of a mid-Atlantic trade wind. I've searched the web. I find only dramatic images of storms or waves breaking on shore. This is not what the sea looks like mid-ocean in good weather with a brisk wind below fleeting clouds; water five miles deep, waves of some height but because of their great length are more like the gentle undulation of dunes. 

These grand waves - deep blue in troughs; a spectrum to almost transparent aquamarine under crests that occasionally break. Along slopes, perhaps quarter of a mile, the wind disappears in the troughs, leaving them smooth, before, as the next slope rises the wind blows again on the water, ruffling it as a hand stroking blue velvet might raise a nap transforming its tone.
Imagine such a slow shifting seascape - as these large waves catch a boat from behind, raising her gently up, bringing a grand panorama into sight, pass serenely, almost silently beneath us - but for the gentle sounds of the boat's passage, slappings on the hull, creakings in the rigging, lapping water at the bow - passing serenely ahead as we slip into the next trough and our horizon closes to the ragged line of the next wave. If we could capture a few seconds of such unforgettable beauty it would convey a vision that seems quite rare. See you soon.

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Simon Baddeley