Yesterday was one of those days you write home about. Well, huh. I guess I write home about every day on this trip, but you know what I mean. It was clear, sunny and tropical warm. The water was turquoise blue like in Tahiti. There were beaches and palm trees along the shore. In the morning I did a little work, like a few minor maintenance items (as always), but mostly I spent my day on the important tasks- eating good food, reading a good book, working on my tan, and napping.
The day started with easy sailing under main and genoa, as the 10-knot wind was still a little forward of the beam. By early afternoon, the wind moved aft a bit, perked up to 12-15 knots, and the seas remained very flat, so up went my spinnaker. And I’ve been making better than 8 knots boat speed ever since.
I had forgotten how quickly the miles pass at that speed, and the lines of latitude click by as I pass over them. Actually, according to my extensive calculations, sailing at 8 knots gets me to my destination approximately twice as fast as sailing at 4 knots. (See, I told you I did a little work).
Two things in particular caught my attention last night. The first was how incredibly long some fishing net setups are. I spotted a line of connected buoys that stretched over 2 miles from end to end. I was very glad to be sailing parallel to it, and not trying to cross it somewhere! At night the buoys are lit, and with one every 100 meters or so, they look like airplane runways out in the middle of nowhere.
The second item was a meteorite that I thought was going to splash down right next to me. The whole event didn’t last but maybe 3 seconds, but it was scary close. I was looking out towards a fishing boat in the distance when a very bright light suddenly appeared over my head. It was as though a police helicopter turned a huge spotlight on me, as I was lit up with very bright white light. I immediately looked up at the light (just like all dumb animals)and saw the meteorite streaking almost straight down at me. I watched it burn out after 2 seconds, and held my breath listening for the splash! It really felt that close. Well, I didn’t hear a splash nor see a cloud of steam, but good god, great balls of fire, that was a moment of excitement.
Today looks to be another perfect day, but Saturday and Sunday may bring some strong southerly winds from a storm off Argentina, so I think I’m going to park somewhere along the way and watch that go by from a comfy anchorage. Salvador looks like the best candidate around latitude 13, and I should get there a few hours before the wind and rain.
10.52S 36.24W 3252nm gone, 1996nm to go. 8am 9/2