Noon Position: 47 22S 09 27W
Sail: Big genoa, full main, close reach
Sea: N3, S4
Sky: Just gray. Gray everywhere
Cabin Temp: 53
Water Temp: 47
Miles last 24-hours: 135
Miles since departure: 10,286
How good it is to have slept well.
Just after last night’s post, I suited up, went back on deck and lofted the starboard pole. Wind had dropped to 10 knots, and the sail emptied and filled on the low, slow swell with a slap that sounded like rifle fire and shook the boat to its bones, a problem the pole solves.
Then I had a beer, cooked up a pot of shepherd’s pie (there were carrots in the forepeak–I’d forgotten!) and went directly to my bunk. A quite night in the Southern Ocean, what a gift; must take advantage.
Mo coasted easterly on a mostly flat sea. As I slept in my luxuriously mostly flat berth, the twins growled and grumbled for want of wind, but the complaints were not serious. I let them go. Each time I rose, the north wind that was due in the wee hours and would require sail changes had not arrived. I returned to the delicious, full-body warmth of the bag and dreamt.
At 4am I found Mo headed SSE but at 3 knots. The northerly had arrived, but it was gossamer yet. I opted for two more hours of sleep.
At 6am I took the poles down and put Mo on a reach with the big genoa leading the way and the main backing her up. We immediately went to 7 knots. Then there came a twang of guilt. That two extra hours of sleep cost us several miles of easting. One morning of laziness, no big deal, but make a habit of it and it could cost us days; it could cost us the Horn.
But I had slept! A new man was I. I could fill Mo’s sails with my own lungs.
So forget it!
Wind has come lightly from the north all day. With our big sails up, we have pushed on it good fashion, first in heavy fog, then drizzle, then just plain gray.
With the boat so still, I decided to make an egg scramble for breakfast. Onions, sausage, cheese, four eggs. All was well until I went on deck to tweak Monte’s control line and got distracted by a pod of white-sided dolphins racing Mo’s bow wave. When below again, I found I had burnt the eggs and filled the cabin with burnt-egg smoke. Even with hatches opened, the smell persisted and could only be eradicated, I decided, by baking bread.
Lunch was fresh bread with peanut butter and apricot jam. I had to stop myself after four slices.
In about three days we will reach the prime meridian, that line of zero degrees longitude that passes north/south through Greenwich and is, for all practical purposes, where time begins. In a week or so we should be below Cape Good Hope. In another 40 or so days, we’ll begin to pass under Australia. Another 40 or so days, Cape Horn.
But today I don’t have to worry about all those miles. I slept well, have fresh bread, and Mo flies on a flat sea.