When the cannon is fired this year, on November 22, 2009, I will be aboard one of 223 yachts, from a record 32 nations, in the 24th running of the ARC. Though I've been around boats for most of my life, and on sailboats since before I could walk, I've never been more then 30 or so miles offshore, and I've certainly never been across an ocean. I'm not quite sure what to expect, so if you have any experience with this, let me know. What should I look for on a transatlantic trip? What are some of the essential items I should bring? If you have any advice, a transatlantic tale of your own, or anything else you think I should know before I head off across the Atlantic, please, let me know. Drop me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and let me know what you have to say.