Tuesday Day 4
Brice had since
Monday muttered about
I decided to check out my newly acquired sextant. This must be the perfect time. Well, perfect if you knew how to calculate your position. I had a book, but eh... It wasn’t that easy to figure it out. And you had to correct for all sorts of stuff, especially when not taking your position at noon. So. I packed my sextant again.
I think it was Tuesday we were almost alone all day. No ships. No nothing. Paula would usually exclaim “We got neighbors”, but not today. So, at dinner time, we all went below deck to prepare dinner, and when we got up a giant cruise ship appeared 10 miles away.
Wednesday Day 5
the weather gets markedly colder and the wind more powerful, like in Denmark.
It’s like we pass from subtropical to temperate almost overnight. We decided to
I went above deck, “dancing” my way through the saloon. Brice was on watch sitting idle behind the wheel. Big rollers and wind came into our face. “Let’s veer off towards shore and get out of the current and out of these waves”, I suggested. Brice agreed and we steered 330 degrees instead of due north (no. 6 on the map). Brice mumbled with a deep voice: “That was much better!”.
Thursday Day 6
So in the morning I found Paula sleeping up against the table in the saloon. Obviously, her berth was wet, and sleeping on the settee was impossible, because with the waves the boat rolled drastically.
Paula using the table to sleep on.
With a bit of sails set, the rolling subsided a bit. However, our speed was now only 2.5-3 knots even with a full engine. And we used more than half the tank plus 4 containers. Say the tank was a little less than half full we would have maybe 70 gallons left or 58 hours or only 200 miles. A little worrying if we couldn’t make land.
The weather was turning really humid and cold. Sea smoke was appearing, kind of a fog, but not too dense.
In the evening, we found some wind, and made a good 8 knots. I guess we for a while travelled against the mighty Gulf Stream itself or a counter-eddy when we only did 2.5-3 knots.
I selected the 1am to 4am watch. I woke up and heard the VHF radio. “This is U.S. naval vessel. Request permission to perform special operation.” Repeat. I couldn’t hear the answer. I couldn’t see anything but darkness when I went on deck. There was two vessels –two white lights- south of us, but from earlier we concluded it must have been fishing boats. I wondered if the navy used any lights when on exercise? There was nothing on the radar. When it was this dark, you felt like being in a little room limited by what the instrument lights and running lights revealed just around you, but going somewhere. It wasn’t possible to see anything in front of the boat. Even the 1 million candlelight flashlight didn’t prove of much use.
So I just concentrated on soaking in the experience, trying not to think of what logs or other things could be in the front of the boat. I looked to the southwest of port watching a few white caps, it seemed. Hey wait a minute; something was coming at the boat at an awesome speed from maybe 100 feet away. I could see water whipped white zooming towards the boat in the distance, like a propeller, except there were maybe 7 or 8 of these. As it came closer I could eye out grey tornado-formed shapes underwater in front of the white water. The shapes went right under the boat. Zoom!