Around The World Voyage : Commentary : Leg 4

May 18, 2002

Saturday morning aboard NORDHAVN. Normally, I would be having breakfast with my friend Jerry Neely at this time. On most Saturdays, we meet at Proud Mary’s for breakfast at 7:00AM where we discuss a whole range of subjects but mostly business. I met Jerry about 30 years ago when he walked into Kettenburg Marine (my second yacht sales job) looking for a sailboat. I sold him a used Cal 39 and he subsequently over the years has owned two Mason 53s a Mason 64 and finally a Hatteras 61. These days Jerry is boatless and belongs to the OPBYC (Other Peoples Boats Yacht Club).

Back to business… Well, our good luck changed during the night. The sea has changed and is now a witch’s brew of confusion. The same basic 10-12 foot following seas are still there, but at least two additional wave patterns are now in play. Just when NORDHAVN thinks that all she has to do is slide down the face of one of the 12 footers, a sneaker hits us from the side, or the water simply disappears from one side of the boat. Where the wave patterns converge, there is a big mountain. Where troughs converge, there is a big hole. The poor Naiad fins valiantly swing to full lock, but as good as they are, they can’t manufacture instant buoyancy and we lurch. We call the event a “stool tipper” because the loose bar stool that we have in the pilot house (for sitting at the computer) tips over with an unnerving crash. Add to the above that the wind has picked up and is now gusting to about 35, and you can see that it is quite messy. I am sitting in the salon (off watch) using the other computer and frequently look out the back window to see approaching seas above the boat deck or breaking seas level with the salon windows. Apart from the fact that all of this has cost us about 1 knot in speed, it is no big deal and actually rather exciting. NORDHAVN takes her lumps stoically and we feel 100% safe and secure. Mike is asleep and Jeff is playing Tommy James on his beloved stereo.

By the way, we really enjoy the e-mail that we have been receiving from family and friends even if we have not responded individually to you. From time to time, one of us will rub their hands together and say, “lets go fishing” which means retrieve our e-mail thru the iridium phone. (Reminder, don't press "reply" to prevent sending our own messages back to us and never send attachments.)

 

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