To Bermuda, Day 13

S/V SN-E Cetacea Log Day 13 – 79.2 NM 7/9/2023 James’ 3-4 pm watch I (Dena) pushed back when James said, at the end of his 1-3 pm watch, that he thought maybe we should do the sail swap we’d discussed. Since we don’t have a third reef (and I still have no real understanding of why the sailmaker pushed back when we requested one), to shorten sail from a double-reefed mainsail is to switch sails. It seemed early to do such a big production based on my short time in the weather, having just come out. Within 20 minutes, I realized James was right. The right sail 80% of the time is still 20% the wrong sail. When I got some of the behavior he’d seen…8 knots down a wave, burying the leeward caprail on the offset swell…I called for help. We talked through the plan, agonized over whether we really needed to, and finally committed. Figuring that the person who made the call should take the hard part and also that the person off watch is less sharp (James had been napping), it’s our way to divide the labor so that the off-watch person stays in the cockpit while the on-watch person does the deck work. I clipped my tether to the lifeline, eased onto the port, lee side deck, and removed the preventer from the boom. James had been preparing and was ready to deploy the staysail when I got back. With just a hanky flying, I went to the windward, starboard side deck and forward to the mast. The second batten down concerned me, but James sheeted in as I dropped the sail and voila! We were happily depowered. Lashing the sail to the boom had me using one of my favorite safety techniques: put my[…]

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