Feb 9-11, The Long Road

Date: Feb. 11, 2017, noon Position: 4 27.22 S, 21 59.99 W

We’re on the long, long ocean road. It kind of hit us when we reached the 1/4 way from St. Helena to BVI mile…long way coming, l-o-n-g way to go. The pace of life has really slowed down, and we’re totally relaxed into the routine of reading and watching the course as we cut a straight line across the South Atlantic. Sometimes I just sit and stare at the horizon for hours.

We pitched the last few dozens of rotted eggs over the side today–did the old shake test and they all sounded pretty loose inside, and certainly did not smell right on the outside! The other day Nep put in more of a gallant effort at finishing his egg salad than I did, and now he’s paying the price–he’s been a bit queasy for the past 24 hrs. Just goes to show, the only eggs you can trust are the ones you pick fresh from the coop. I did the math on days at sea and remaining food on board, and we should be fine. The last week may get a bit boring, but that will just make the food taste better after we make landfall.

As we reach into the torrid Equatorial climes, the fridge cycles a bit longer each day, sucking more amps out of the battery bank. The night watch is greatly preferred, under a full moon now. We’re picking up radio signals from Trinidad & Chile now as we get further from Africa. And the BBC news is keeping us entertained and happy to be out here on the ocean, dealing with the real issues of the planet! The Orange madman was blathering something about making America “impenetrable”… Winds have picked up a bit and today we finally made more than 150 miles (151) made good on our noon-to-noon. Privateer is slushing down the waves with a single reef, speeds in the 6’s now.

Last night the moon was partially shaded by the earth for a few hours. Around 2230 hrs the full moon dimmed and cast a weird greenish light over the clouds, the sails, and the ocean. It was kind of an X-Files light, and a UFO would have completed the picture. As I was watching the eclipse a sea-bird landed on the end of the boom, and it cocked its head toward the moon, and I swear it was watching the eclipse too. Like riding an elephant’s back, we sailed on Privateer over the gentle waves under the alien-green moon.

We’ve seen two Chinese fish-pillagers in the last few days, otherwise it’s been an empty horizon. We got an AIS signal from the supply ship from Ascension Island, and Nep hallucinated a few ships the other night. Sometimes, when you go for so long at sea, you wish to see something, anything, on the horizon. I remember one time in Alaska when we’d been weeks without seeing another boat or person. We thought we saw a powerboat in the distance, but as we neared we were disappointed to find it was just an iceberg… We’ve lost contact with the Beguine. Yesterday I overslept the sked, and today no contact on the radio. Hopefully we’ll raise them again tomorrow. It kind of feels like Apollo 13 a bit, and we’re on the far side of the moon…

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