Anne had to go to the BCAA to inquire about trip cancellation insurance and also health insurance for her upcoming cruise (I can't be the only one to have fun on the water!). While there, I talked to the representative about insurance for me during the race. I've not actually seen the terms and coverage available through Clipper, but they charge something like 400 GBP per leg (or is it month?) for their insurance, which amounts to close to $1,000 canadian (per month). Through BCAA I can get a year's worth of insurance for about $1,400. Again, though, I have to look at what the exclusions are (for example, they might say no coverage while racing sailboats through the oceans) as well as seeing how much and what is covered, so it's not a fair comparison yet. This is a matter of some importance as I will be out of the country for close to a year. If I am not present in the province for at least 180 days out of a year, then I lose my insurance coverage - although there are waivers that you can get to allow longer times.
Another thing I did was more research into clothing for the trip. I'm really leaning towards a dry suit, especially for the southern oceans and the northern Pacific. It seems to me that spending several weeks in big, big, rollers, with water waching across the decks, is a recipe for utter misery if you're constantly wet. 5 degree (celsius) water squelching around your feet for hours on end can't be much fun and seems like it might well be the start for frostbite. The southern ocean is always going to be cold even though we'll do a lot of traversing across it during its "summer". And, from what I've gleaned from previous races, the northern atlantic crossing happens during the winter, which means not only the water but also the air is going to be really cold.
Cold and wet for a month, not how I might consider happiness, so I want to see what I can do about keeping cold water away from my skin and also keeping warm, dry, clothing close to me. A new sailing dry suit costs something like $1500 to $1800, according to a fast look through some catalogs. I also should go look at used dry suits from the scuba stores. It doesn't have to be as water tight for sailing as it does for SCUBA diving, I think, since we're not looking at several atmospheres worth of water pressure trying to find its way in. Another thing to research are sailing boots. Somehow, I don't think my Topsider leather sailing moccasins are going to cut it for those climates.
The other big worry right now for me is that I might not make it for medical reasons. When I sent in my medical form from my doctor, he identified the brain bleed I had as a "stroke". I suppose, technically, it is, but it's not your typical one and according to the neurologist, I'm at no more risk than anyone else. However, I can certainly understand if the Clipper people don't want to chance it. After all, the middle of the Pacific Ocean is a really bad place to have a serious medical emergency. However, I'm going to fight as hard as I can to not be cut. Still, I might be looking for troubles where there aren't any to be found. My doctor did clear me, so maybe that's good enough for the Clipper people. I can hope, anyway.
Either way, I have the 3-day crew training for the sail south coming up and I really should be focused on that and what kit I'm going to take. It should be somewhat minimal. After all, it's only three days of plotzing about Puget Sound.