A Day of Animals, and Your Comments

13 May

May 11, 2019/Day 218

Noon Position: 20 34N  56 33W

Course(t)/Speed(kts): NW 4

Miles since departure: 29,412

Avg. Miles/Day: 135


Wind picked up in the afternoon and stayed moderate (10 knots) all night. Died back with the day.

I think the rest of this leap to St. John’s will be like this: variable. Variable to weak winds for the next 15 degrees of latitude and variable to strong the rest of the way.

A day of animals.

One of the Skua’s returned, proving that the raviolis I fed it and a partner the other day were at least not universally fatal.

In the afternoon, dolphins were found to be cavorting under Mo’s bow. A pod of three. Monte shook his head, but I thoroughly approve. Water is so clear, could see them racing beneath the surface a hundred feet away.

Then in the evening, the line landed another fish. A dusky brown … something. I don’t know what it is, do you? Mostly eaten by now. Not as dreamy as a Dorado, but certainly digestible.

My wife recently sent to me a batch of your comments from the Figure 8 site with the subject line, “Most of April.” As usual, they were fun to read. Many thanks to all of you for participating in the voyage.

Some quick, short replies now…and more later….

-Pam Wall, that was a fun story about the passing ship and the bottle toss. Yes, those days are long gone. What did you do for self steering back in 1966?

-Stacey Sarkis, but they DO make good rags… Your comment was a good belly laugh. Thank you.

-Mike Dodson/John Martin, bet that was the first time a hairy, shirtless guy has ever got in and out of the DC airport without getting arrested.

-Skip Dubrin, NOW I remember. Thanks for the nudge re how we met. I’ve noted your name popping up in the comments but couldn’t recall. I’ve enjoyed the Crawford book on Celestial. Have gotten some good tidbits out of it. Glad your repair of the Yanmar held. That’s my experience too.

-Joe Hagan, that’s a Man-o-War? The ones we have in the Pacific are (I thought) so much smaller.

-Todd Parsons, the paint I used was Smart Solution by SeaHawk. Previous to that, ePaint SN1. Both are non-metallic, which I require as I have an aluminum hull. Neither is as strong as the copper-based paints. I do have a fair crop of barnacles on the aft quarter only, and I have been surprised how much they DON’T slow Mo down. We still do six knots in a ten knot breeze abeam and seven plus without too much more encouragement. Plan to de-barnacle in St John’s.

-Chuck Fulton, we’re on the way for a close pass of the Sargasso Sea. I’ll bet bringing up a bucket of weed there will be very productive.

-Jean-Pierre Declemy, re plenty of sea room for sails behaving badly, indeed. Another attraction to sailing beyond the sight of land: no one can see you when you screw up the spinnaker.

-Richard Goldstein, we’re doing fine on water so far. I’m still drinking from the forward tank, into which I put all my caught water. According to my calculations, it should have been long gone by now. So, either I caught more than I thought or drank less in the south, or both. Water tastes/smells sulfury, which is too bad, but sailors can’t be choosy about water taste; it just needs to be wet. The aft tank, untouched since before Cape Horn first pass, should still have 70 gallons.

-John of Owl, nice to see your name in the queue. I think of you daily when I use your winch handles.

-Kowden, I think that’s the first time anyone has remarked that the Figure 8 reminds them of a line from Saving Private Ryan.

-Eric Moe, let’s wait to schedule the Figure 8 Regatta until AFTER I’ve returned from the proof-of-concept run.

-Mary, the technology you want to google is AIS (Automatic Information System). In a nut, it transmits coordinates, course, speed, type of vessel, collision potential (and other data) ship-to-ship over VHF radio signals. Don’t leave home without it.

-Kurt, 40 knot winds are quite sailable, and besides, you know they will blow out in a day or so. The doldrums, on the other hand, could last forever. So, doldrums are worse.

-Chris, re swimming. Haven’t yet. Should.

-Ben Ransom, nice summary of Albatross flight. Sorry you weren’t able to be the discoverer of the mechanics of flight, but kudos for honesty. You’ve heard of Safina’s *Eye of the Albatross?*

-Ben Markowitz gets 50 demerit points for asking a deep and philosophical question. Clearly he did not read the Figure 8 Comments Bylaws where it it is stated that the WHY? question is off limits. Kidding, will try to answer in future post. But will say here that you are being too hard on your teenager for not understanding what I’m doing. That makes him/her sound quite reasonable; quite well adjusted. And all it means is that the passion pursuit he/she eventually comes to … will likely not be adventure sailing.

This article was syndicated from The Figure 8 Voyage


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