Great 24 hours, easy 14 knots of wind, subdued, tranquilo seas...
We caught up on sleep on our off watches, baked bread, enjoyed several more meals of yummy mahi-mahi.
Then the ITCZ played a little hop scotch.
Just when we thought we were free of its fickle tricks, it jumped back on top of us. It snatched our wind and left us becalmed, annoyed the clouds into a fury, which they took out on us, in sullen squalls and burping, thundery, piles of moody convection.
The Moon (Our dilettante Mother) has taken to joining us later and later each evening. She leaves us to face our first two watches in a night dark as pitch, with overcast skies. We roll blindly through shadow, dropping, climbing, pitching, surging on the whispering sea, trying to make order of such discombobulating chaos--is impossible.
Even the GPS wonders where the hell we are, with an occasional squawk of alarm, it lets us know it has temporarily lost contact with any sort of satellite signal;
and we find ourselves in a state of non-existence.
Very little reading gets done when it gets likes this.
It's far too weird...
and strangely impossible, to tear ones eyes away from such a display of Nothingness.
Mostly, you spend those three hour watches, staring into that abyssal confessional box, delving into your deepest, primordial
Dark matter, punctuated by searing flashes of profound Love and Gratitude.
When the Moon appears, (better late than never) she makes it up to you, asks for a song and all is forgiven.
It's time to make cocoa and play the guitar.
The winds are not as Easterly as we were hoping for, so we pull up the cutter and keep close hauled through the night.
Shaping the course for Hilo, with an eye on the gribs, we keep trying for a little more North, 13* Lat. is our new goal.
We expect the trades to come in full and hearty, and seas to pick up in a day or so. It would be much nicer to sail these conditions, (on our final stretch) while taking them aft of the beam,
rather than hard on the nose.
We had our fill of that, on the earlier leg of this passage.
Jon decides to kick on the motor and power through our last fleck and wheeze of the rheumy Doldrums.
We still have to drain the fuel filter-but at least its every two hours, instead of every forty minutes.
If all goes as planned (which is, of course, me, joking), we should find our wind by eight o'clock tonight, make 13*N in another 100 miles or so, and then bomb on down to Hilo with a smart Easterly, aft of our beam.
In six days, we would arrive (in this fantastic dream), in Radio Bay on Sunday morning.
Customs would be closed, so we wouldn't have to deal with that hassle, until the next morning, leaving us free to inflate our dinghy, put it in the water, head to the nearest store for cold beers and lemonades, come back to the boat,
eat a large and indulgent meal...and sleep for twenty hours straight.
And on that note, I better go check the fuel filter....