Around The World Voyage : Commentary

November 8,2001
Day 6
0330 Pacific Daylight Time
Latitude 28.10.364
North Longitude 128.14.953
West Heading 240m
Speed 6.2 knots

Like the giant roof being opened in a sports stadium, half of the sky behind me is cloud covered, but ahead, a multitude of clear stars finally becomes visible. We must be entering the genuine Trades, with a clearing sky, and 15 knots of breeze on our port quarter.

The wind has clocked around about 180 degrees since we departed Dana Point.

And now, the moon shows itself, sending down a silver shimmer on the sea behind us. I turn off the Boticelli and open the tops of the both Dutch doors in the wheelhouse so I can hear, in natural stereo, the bow wave foaming along both sides of Nordhavn.

November 8,2001
Day 6:
Dana Point to Honolulu
0500 Pacific Daylight Time

Zowie! The gentle swell and steady breeze of the Trades are working wonders on our Speed Over Ground (SOG). Since I took the watch, our speed has increased to 6.4 knots from 6.2, the fastest yet on this passage.

(Later, other members of the crew loudly question the 6.4 knots, saying I must have throttled up during my watch.)

November 8,2001
Day 6:
Dana Point to Honolulu
1215 Pacific Daylight Time

Speaking of crew, it's time I formally introduced them.

The captain of the ship is Jim Leishman, one of the founding partners of Pacific Asian Enterprises, creators and builders of the Nordhavn range of passagemakers that dominate the power segment of the trawler market. The director of the Nordhavn 40 circumnavigation project at PAE, Jim will get off the boat in Hawaii to rejoin it later in its 23,000-nautical-mile trek around the planet.

Taking over as captain for the leg from Honolulu to Singapore will be Dave Harlow, a friend of Jim and his brother, Jeff, since childhood in San Clemente, California. Dave has been with PAE for eight years, project manager of the 46- and 50-footers for the last five years during which he has overseen the construction and commissioning of 50 vessels.

Jim and Dave have colossal amount of sea time behind them, especially on Nordhavns. To say they are intimately acquainted with the 40 and its systems would be a gross understatement.

Fuller biographical information on Jim and Dave can be found in the On File section of the Nordhavn 40 Around The World feature.

The third member of the crew is Eric Leishman, Jim's 17-year-old son who is a high-school senior fortunate enough to be able to make an arrangement with his teachers for time off. If he completes a journal of the voyage and other assignments, Eric will not be reported to the truancy patrol.

Me, myself, I provided some background on my participation in the first report in this series.

Every 24 hours, we each stand watch twice for three hours, which leaves 18 hours for eating, sleeping, reading, e-mail, and exchanges of views and experiences about boats, motorcycles, and other endearing topics.

The unseen participant in all this is Bob Towery back at who uploads these reports almost as quickly as I can churn them out.

I'm using Jim's new HP Pavilion XH545 laptop to write the reports, and transfer them to a diskette for the trip up to the wheelhouse and the ship's computer which is a Toshiba Satellite model purchased at Costco. Outlook Express is the e-mail program used for transmission of messages via the resurrected Iridium satellite telephone system.

Iridium is currently the best way to stay connected by telephone anywhere in the world.

The hardware costs about $1,000, the antenna is tiny, and the usage toll is $1.50 per minute, anytime, anywhere, without any long-distance surcharge. That's a great deal, especially if you're circumnavigating, and the clarity in voice mode is startling, without any annoying delay.


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