Life at Sea with EW and Me
Does Anybody Really Know What Time It Is?


There is a rhythm out here. Actually, there are many rhythms out here.

The waves.

The wind in the rigging.

Our sleep patterns.

Our watches.

Listen to a sea chantey and you will hear the rhythms of a boat at sea.

We still have very light winds, and the swells have lessened, so while we aren't moving as fast as we'd like, we are moving toward our goal, comfortably, inexorably, consistently. We reached a milestone this morning and are finally north of Bermuda and over 600 miles east, with just over 1200 miles to the Azores.

We have had close encounters of the large ship kind and are delighted with the Nimble Navigator program that allows us to use AIS information from the VHF radio to plot those ships right on the same chart with which we navigate. The program tells us the name of the ship, how large it is, where it's going, it's course over ground, and it's speed. When I went off watch at midnight, I told EW that we had two "targets". One would pass 12 miles to our starboard and cross our bow well ahead of us. The other would come within a mile or two. A very loud ship's horn sounds on the computer when a ship is within 3 miles -- in case we aren't paying attention.

Of course EW paid attention, and turned the computer's audio down so I could sleep. He watched the ship, first on radar and the laptop, and later as the lights came into view. He knew it would pass us to starboard, but also knew it would be fairly close as ships go.

As it neared he heard a voice on the radio, "Hello? Hello?" Not very nautical, but then we don't broadcast AIS information so he had no way of knowing the name of our boat. EW responded and they had a conversation. The boat had 21 crew from the Phillipines, and EW's new friend wanted to know how many we had on board and whether we were in a race. (Later, EW was a little insulted when he realized that if we had been in a race, and we were the first boat the Australia Maru had encountered, we would have been the last boat in the race.) Regardless, they had a pleasant conversation, didn't hit us, and this AIS system works. Life is good aboard La Luna.

This trip has emphasized our need for solar panels as we are using fuel to charge the batteries. Gramps is a great wind generator, but does squat with 6-8 knots of wind. Ah well. Going is much better than waiting for the perfect. Going is a more perfect life than not going. Going is good. I may actually this crossing thing. Don't tell EW yet, OK?

(Today's happy post brought to you in part by Shower Day. Woo Hoo!)


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Very happy to hear all is going well. As usual your posts crack me up. I have a healthy concern for you both, like a mom waiting for their kids to get home safely from a party. LOL. I can't wait to hear about the first person you encounter when you arrive, your going to talk their ear off. I am proud of you and EW, your brave as hell. Straight away. LOVE and hugs Darleen. Shower day!!!! whoo hoooo

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