To Bermuda, Day 12

S/V SN-E Cetacea Log Day 12 – 102.3 NM


Dena’s 1-2 pm watch

The rambunctious seas are foam-streaked but the foam slides down the far side. I (Dena) remember that there’s a difference, when it comes to the Beaufort scale, in foam that is left behind by the kinetic energy in the waves and foam that is blown down the forward face of the waves. Next step is breaking wave tops and I’m glad we’re not watching those come up our asses.

I just applied my first bandaid. I was on the windward side in the cockpit, braced down low on the footwell grate instead of higher on the edge of the seat. James was sitting on that side and we were sharing a cold lunch because cooking seemed way too hard.

My hands were full of tortilla and a sort of dip-slash-burrito filling when a bigun’ swept under us. It tipped me towards James on the low side and my butt started sliding on the cushion. I planted my foot but it slipped too and my fourth toe dipped into the square void meant for water. 

Ouch owowow. I pursed my lips against the pain and annoyance. James asked if I was okay and of course I said yes. I told him what happened and we both looked.

Ugh. Bleeding. 

After cleanup it was clear that I’d torn the cuticle. Not badly, just a scrape really. Another wakeup call, though. No getting sloppy out here.

The light winds from before are long gone, so the flat seas are too. We have to sail the ocean we’re on, moment to moment.

James’ 6-7 pm watch

I look abaft and the world is a churning angry mess but to forward the his of the waves leaves only a memory of their potential. The big ones now seem to have their own weather systems within their growling depths.

The sun is dropping aft behind wispy clouds and it’s backlighting the wave crests. Most remain a deep-shadowed cobalt but some rise and thin and the tepid sunlight shows through as aquamarine.

The wind may be abating. If it does ease and the waves lay down a bit, this will be a good night. If it does ease but the waves are packing too much power to follow, Lovebot will struggle to steer.

Always running the possibilities. Always looking for multiple options. Whether it’s ditch spots down the Jersey Shore and Delmarva Peninsula late last year after James broke his rib or sail options in case the lull is temporary and the wind increases instead…this is what I do.


James’ 6-9 am long-light watch

Just like with Dena’s last watch we got hit by a growing squall packing bullet-rain as soon as we shift kiss…this fucking storm hates me…this fucking Verse could give a fuck.

S/VSN-E Cetacea is wildly in her element. She is taking good care of the soft bits aboard that’s for sure and all our systems are working nominally so far and that’s pretty cool given these absolutely extreme conditions.

Dena’ 9-10 am watch

9:20 am: The wind came back fresh from a short rest and pummeled us all night. The real treat? Repeated rains. Over and over.

…the ship’s radioman said, “More of same, good luck!”

…thanks buddy!

I (Dena) limped along with a pair of near-useless rain pants for a couple of years. They caught the mud off my bike tires heading at my butt and legs, so I figured it was enough. I’d trashed them over the long winter riding from the marina in Lynn to work in Beverly. Enough tears and I finally threw them away.

In Marathon, I had the sudden odd realization that I was a sailor with no foul-weather pants. Going offshore? Heading towards places that can be cold and wet even in the summer?

No way. Chalk up another unexpected expense.

Last night proved it a good investment. It’s not cold, but drenching rain and high winds are a chilling combo.

Dena geared up for weather

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