Yesterday was mostly motoring, with a couple of sub-hour stretches of sailing. These brought us “off course” a bit, but when the wind picks up enough from a direction you can use, you grab it. Outside those windows it was relatively calm and flat. We halfheartedly exercised, squats and pushups, but it’s not quite habit yet. We stopped for a mid-day swim in our glorious giant swimming pool. Captain finally pooped, and oh what a poop, but we were relieved despite the stench. We refilled the gas tank; it’s hard to measure precisely with our dodgy vegetable oil cans but we fit in seven of them, meaning we’d gone through a little less than 35 gallons.
It was also a good day for animals. We got a really brief pass from some dolphins, saw a turtle hanging out next to a floating bamboo log, and got our first visits from the red-footed boobies. One of the latter tried to sleep on our bow railing…
But it was deterred when the wind picked up from the southwest, the worst direction for us, and the boat started slamming. Every time we hit a wave we lose momentum, so the night’s motoring was slow and rough. It was also cloudy, driving home the uncomfortable contrast to the previous night’s stunning stars, meteor showers, and flatter water. Also the shallow water alarm pinged a bunch of times, despite us being in thousands of feet of water. After an hour of reading less than forty feet, Jazz grabbed a flashlight and started searching for the kraken; maybe we could harness it and get over 3.5 knots. Like the rest of the shift, this was a disappointment.
At shift change this morning, we also got a wind change, and Andrew put up the sails. When Jazz woke again we added the Staysail, because that involves going forward and we don’t leave the cockpit if only one of us is awake. It makes a big difference in comfort, if not in speed, for such a tiny scrap of canvas. So now we’re moving west, autopilot in wind vane mode, hoping it holds until evening like the models predict.
3512 miles to go.