Back on starboard tack again. You’ll sense a recurring theme here. This is what I’m think of as our ‘zag’, port tack being the former part of the zigzag that will eventually take us to California (we hope). The key element of this frustratingly necessary tactic is to not look at our track or course on the chart plotter. If you are foolish enough to do this, you instantly lose the will to live and discover a hitherto unknown desire to put something large and destructive through the screen of the offending display. Just got to keep focused on that VMG; all that counts.
We took a brief moment of respite from the life of walls being the horizontal surface earlier, hove-to, and did a dignified lunch. Renaud produced his long awaited nacho based meal, which certainly lived up to the anticipation. The enabling factor in this meal finally taking place was the new level of determination and commitment with which the nachos have been hidden from me since leaving Hawaii. After the previous controversy of The Great Nacho Disappearance, there was obviously a team huddle from which I was excluded, and new strategies brought into play to ensure the safeguarding of the key ingredients, along with maintaining my relationship with Renaud. I’m not sure it could endure another case of midnight nacho munchies.
The novelty of a deck-side team picnic on a relatively flat surface complete, we spent a bit of time squaring away the rest of the boat. The bilges were thoroughly emptied, the galley cleaned better than usual, a few bits on deck were tidied up, and the steelwork was polished.
OK, the steelwork was most definitely not polished, but we did sort everything else out. With only five of us it can be hard keeping up with all the additional duties that a boat demands, especially when driving hard to wind. The trouble keeping bilges dry is compounded by the fact all the water we really want to get out ends up in inaccessible places when we’re heeled right over. Therefore, I much prefer a brief hove-to, have a proper tidy, let everyone get their personal stuff straightened out, and it provides an environment in which we can much more efficiently do what we need to. That short bit of time ‘not sailing’ does wonders as a little reset for boat and bodies alike.
The night produced a quiet and uneventful set of watches, with lighter airs creating a bit of a slowdown as we push back northeast. It’s getting quite hard to come up with new concepts from the galley, most meals now being a derivative in some form of potatoes, beans or rice, so original cooking is a welcome change.
Since then it’s been pretty pedestrian sailing. One could almost say uninspiring. We’ve seen zero signs of civilization after our first night out when a few fishing boats passed us heading towards Hawaii, and the wildlife has been limited to a solitary couple of tropical seabirds, with an albatross thrown in for good measure.
The Weatherfax is happily churning out more small squares of meteorological insight into the world around us, and I’ve spotted a tropical storm brewing right in the corner down by the Mexican coastline, TS Dora. The current information puts its track a long way from anywhere we’ll be any time soon so no concern there, but it’s an interesting addition to the other forecast sections, that look like predominately ENE’lys for the foreseeable future. Disappointing…
Henry is building up to a big spaghetti bolognaise tonight. The boy does a good bolognaise, as has been proved on several previous occasions, so anticipation is on the rise. I’m considering cracking into the baking for the first time since departure and trying to emulate the cakes that my mother produced in Hawaii. However, this could well be pushing the envelope of my galley skill set, and will probably make a terrible mess everywhere. More on that tomorrow…
Date: 25th June 2017
Position: 27°25.6N 151°20.8W
COG: 120°T (just tacked).
Wind: ENE 3
Swell: NE 2-4ft
Sky: Stratocumulus 3/8
Weather: Fair, isolated showers at night.
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