Fun? You Call this Fun?
West At Last

Five Good Things

Some of my Facebook friends have been posting three good things a day. I like reading them, and do believe that thinking about the good things puts one in a positive frame of mind. So there will be some good things mentioned in this post. (I think I've been whining and no wine is drunk on passages. That's a good thing but it's not one of the five.)

I had trouble getting my GRIB weather files down the other night, and when we finally got them we realized that the front we were hoping to avoid by heading south to 24 degrees North will be farther south than expected. We decided to sail to south to 18 degrees north (are you confused yet?) before starting to go west. Some folks plan to sail south to the Cape Verde Islands before heading west, hoping to get out of the northern fronts and more into the expected trade winds or Christmas winds. When EW sailed across on S/V Bear they were able to sail west directly from Tenerife, and made it to Antigua in 17 days. I am so jealous, as we had hoped to go west early on, but we'll take what we get. I'll receive new GRIBS tomorrow morning when I send this out and will confirm our plan to continue south for another day or so.

We've had 20-25 knots of wind, gray skies, steel gray seas, and 4-6 foot and larger waves in a nasty, undisciplined chop. The auto-pilot is working overtime to hold us on course as we surf down the big waves, or get rolled by one hitting us from the side. Things fly and roll on the boat, and the wood decks and joints creak. It's noisy as heck down below, one of the reasons I have a difficult time sleeping. We've discovered I love it when I'm off watch at night and EW has to start the engine to charge the batteries. When I told EW that the engine masked all the noises that kept me awake, he said it was a "Big-A## White Noise Machine". He thinks he's funny. Some sailing folks we've been in contact with are less than 100 miles ahead of us, also in these conditions. They have a different type of mono-hull and they've been taking waves over the stern. Theirs is an aft-cockpit boat so they have much more to be disgruntled about than I do.

Which brings me to Five Good Things:
1. I have many frozen meals that are easily prepared. So far we've had one of our Thanksgiving "TV Dinners" and a meat pasta sauce over spaghetti. We can eat frozen meals 12 days out here if we have to. That's a good thing.
2. Despite my (justified) reputation as a bit of a klutz I apparently have an innate ability to catch wayward galley objects as they fly over the fiddle rail and off the counter.
3. Despite those sharp reflexes, I have successfully stopped myself from trying to catch two knives that tried to escape. I even nimbly moved my feet out of the way of their landing, without falling over.
4. The Kindle (mine) and the IPod (EW's) are loaded with good books. This is not the time to sew, do unnecessary boat projects, or play the guitar.
5. We have successfully gone 48 hours without screwing something up or having something break.

There. Five Good Things is much better than whining.

As I write this a t 18:36 UTC on December 6th, We are located at 21 degrees 54.25 minutes North, and 022 degrees 38.35 minutes West. Our course is 212 and everything is fine.



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