Madeira to Lanzarote Day 2

Wednesday, May 8

Dena’s 1300-1400 watch

Sailing at about 2.5 knots is no hardship with the new, calmer sea state. We’re on a close reach, making up some of the easting we lost in the dead air this morning. The sky is overcast and has me feeling sleepy. Maybe I’ll nap on my next off-watch.

Yesterday, I tried to rush below to grab the camera and I jammed my second toe on the companionway sill. It hurt enough that I iced it, and I’m glad. I avoided the swelling I may have gotten. The bruising rings the whole toe, probably the effect of gravity but still rather impressively painful looking. No pain at rest, so it’s not bone.

Ouch at sea!

Dena’s 1500-1600 watch

Not only did I nap, James didn’t rouse me until 10 minutes into my watch!

We’re now on a beam reach, or just behind the beam, F2. It’s an easygoing 3 knots. We’re still clouded over and not making much solar for propulsion, but both house batteries are full.

Dena’s 1700-1800 watch

James spotted a dolphin just before my watch started. It was alone, oddly, and he’s sure it was a spinner so that’s unusual. It paced us, surging ahead and falling behind a few times, for about 15 minutes and then dropped astern, dove, and was not seen again. The cool part was how close it came. I wonder if fishers throw bait to dolphin around here…

One last sunset at sea...ha

Dena’s 2100-2400 watch

I love this. The sound of water on the hull like surf, the stars and even the clouds that cover them. The wind that sends us rocking across the miles and the belief that we’re here in relation to there. I’m so glad we left Terceira. I needed this.

The End...

Thursday, May 9

Dena’s 0900-1000 watch

Week after week of watching the North Atlantic weather (starting in September when we were still trying to get to the Mediterranean) gave us a sense of “normal” for different areas. Part of the reason we blew off Europe for this summer’s destination was that ”normal” was pretty terrible between the Azores and Ireland. No gaps big enough to slip north between enormous storms. And then once in Ireland, it looked a lot like the winter we’d just had…blustery, rainy, even similar temperatures.

Down here, though…the winds looked almost steady and, while sometimes strong, not cyclical storm winds that lasted for days and came from multiple directions including, inevitably, on the nose. Leaving Madeira without any weather forecast at all would have been far more nerve-wracking without that basic understanding of the wind patterns in the area.

And we’re getting what we hoped for so far. Another two days of this and we’ll have relaxed our way to Lanzarote. If it pipes up and we have to handle bigger waves, well…we will.

Dena, my love!

Noon position: N 30° 41.274’ W 015° 10.688’
Distance noon to noon: 85.5 NM
Average speed: 3.57 kn
Trip distance covered: 152.4 NM
Distance to destination: 133.1 NM

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