Terceira-Santa Maria Day 1

4/24, James’s 1700-1800 watch

We’re averaging about 4.5 knots on a beam reach, port tack, in a F4-5. The seas are busy but not terrible. It’s definitely something that’ll take getting used to again. 

All hail meclazine! I got a little unsteady in my stomach in my first off-watch, below deck. The last hour had been fine in the cockpit and now I’m lying on the starboard settee without queasiness. Beluga Greyfinger is a tense little lump under the covers in the forepeak. Poor kitty will be okay, but I’ll worry about him until he drinks, eats, and uses the litter box.

I took the boat out of the slip and, wow, that couldn’t have been easier. Cetacea is handling well despite not being able to clean her bottom. The new paddle for LoveBot is doing its job, and the rest of it seems no worse for a winter of disuse. The sails look good and set well. So far, so good on the gear.

James’s 1900-2000 watch

I’m already getting stiff from bracing against the boat’s motion. It’ll be ibuprofen for dinner, I guess.

Earthling Author Dena Hankins underway again!

On the other hand, I’m glad to be away…underway. I still hope we get propane in Lanzarote or Gran Canaria, but we may not be able to make enough east in the conditions that are coming. I’m not averse to the idea of skipping it for Cabo Verde except that running out of cooking gas partway to Brazil would be…bad.

4/25 Dena’s 2400-0300 watch

I’m beginning to get a little more poetic but I’m still pretty focused on the practicalities. The moon is full but the sky is cloudy, so it’s not fully dark but there isn’t that interest point in the sky. 

We’re rolling along pretty fast, still on the beam reach. The waves have gotten a little less bad? We’re doing 4.5 knots on average and the wind is a little lighter than when we started. It’s forecasted to come down overnight and especially at the beginning of the morning, but we’ll see what that actually feels like. I kind of hope to have enough wind to keep overcoming these waves instead of being washed around by them.

Beluga Greyfinger cuddled with me while I was trying to sleep. I didn’t succeed in getting any but it was nice that he wanted to be close. When I got up for the beginning of this shift he jumped out of the bunk and made his slow careful way to the litter box. That’s one body function down. Now let’s hope he drinks and eats and normalizes.

Dena’s 0600-0900 watch

Last night’s sunset was a step of light between the clouds and the water. This morning’s sunrise happened behind thick clouds over São Miguel. 

A fishing boat took hours to pass, always worth a little attentiveness in case they lay on the speed suddenly. Slightly less traffic than I’d expected, but that’s definitely fine with me.

The wind is down to F3ish, and we’re making enough lee that we are basically beating to get close to São Miguel. The last message James got when we were leaving was that his sister had a heart attack. It would be nice to get a wisp of signal for an update. 

Then we’ll turn a little downwind, and that should help with speed against the waves and reduce the amount of lee.

Noon position: N 37° 42.359’ W 026° 00.508’

Distance between 14:34 and noon: 84.1 NM

Average speed: 3.93 kn


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