S U N S H I N E

7 Mar

March 5, 2019/Day 152

Noon Position: 47 09S  122 36W

Course(t)/Speed(kts): ExN 6 – 7

Wind(t/tws): WxS 14

Miles since departure: 20,855

Avg. Miles/Day: 137

 

Clear night. Not a cloud. Orion is setting in the west; Scorpio, full and bright in the east, is rising. I trace out all the star paths I know and then try to identify the outliers. Why can’t I find Miaplacidus, for example? Or Atria?

A solitary star deep in the south is, I think, Achernar, which we’ve not seen since coming down the Pacific three months ago; it will eventually lead to Diphda and on to the great, sign-post constellation, Pegasus. But that won’t be until we begin our climb into the Atlantic.

At 3am, wind spikes. I’m in my bunk when I feel Mo lay way over. I race on deck. Horizontal rain. A squall. I dash into my foulies and boots, but by the time I return to the cockpit, the apocalypse is over. There is not a remnant of cloud to be seen, and the stars twinkle as if nothing had happened.

Sunup brings sunshine. And again, the sky is devoid of its gray and cumbersome cousin. A low is on the way and the horizon to windward is hazy, but all morning, unmitigated sun.

By noon I get the clue–it will be a sunny day, and I put out things to dry: rugs, sleeping bags, towels, foulies, and then sweep and mop the cabin. This was not on the to-do list. But one takes opportunities as they arise.

I should explain that we get plenty of sun down here, but its duration is typically brief at best. A night and a day without cloud; I can’t recall the last time we experienced that!

Today we passed through longitude 122W, and in so doing crossed directly under my home city, San Francisco. For a moment, it felt close, what with the warm day and cobalt blue water, but it is, in fact, a full 5,000 miles to the north. And we are not headed that way now in any case. Cape Horn is 2,117 miles further on, and our course is to the east.

This article was syndicated from The Figure 8 Voyage

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