Monday, June 15, 2009

Day 21 - Bermuda to Ireland

Weather: Ahhh, at last, calm... Seas are down to around 3' waves and gentle, winds are calmer (low teens, dropping less from time to time) - we even had full main and genoa flying for much of yesterday evening. Still overcast and cold (so wrapped up), but it is nice to be able to enjoy this calm; Kyle predicts it is just a brief lull before the next pressure system but he really is NOT complaining about the low winds, AMAZING.  Finally, we can leave the helm to tend for itself for 30 seconds, life is much better.

General Comments: In yesterday's rig check I discovered a hole in my welly (where the boot meets the leg) and we saw 2 ships yesterday. After one of many large waves hitting us, the rudder indicator stopped working and when Kyle went to inspect, luckily, it had just popped off its ball joint so an easy fix. (Kyle complained about this last sentence - he says "the weather in the last few days has been just horrible. As we've mentioned. Yesterday we had a particularly large number of breaking seas that came over and into the boat, probably an interaction with the slight current but very frightening nonetheless. Every time one would hit the boat there was an explosion of water and the boat would slew sideways 30-40 degrees before ending the skid. One of them managed to permanently stretch the life lines (most likely the same one that ripped off the enclosure track). The wave that broke the rudder indicator. Usually the only warning we would get is about 1/2 second of loud hissing before it hit - not enough time to turn the boat to a better angle. Every time I heard that hiss, my stomach would be up in my throat wondering what was about to come. Most of the rest of the time the waves were both impressive and frightening. It is not so much the peaks as the troughs that cause the effect as the boat rides to the top of the wave and you look down into the next trough from atop the helm seat on the boat, it feels as if you are sitting on a lawn chair on someone's roof and about to slide off onto their lawn. Then, of course, immediately behind that is another steep wall of water just as high again. It is always a surprise to both of us when a particularly large and menacing waves, that the boat just floats over uneventfully. Of course, the worst is when you can see the top 5 or 10' of water folding over into a breaker and you know the boat can't get out of the way in time - it feels as though we've been dealing with this for too many days now. Maryanne slept so well on her off watch repeated yelling didn't wake her, I actually had to go into the bedroom to wake her. Today seems like a huge relief.".

Last night on my watch, I spotted a sailboat flying it's illuminated spinnaker, I was just analyzing to determine if we were on a collision course and who had right of way, when the clouds moved and I discovered it was the moon I was trying to avoid!!! 

Aboard Footprint we have a large pump action thermos to allow us to have hot drinks throughout the day without having to keep boiling the kettle; we've not used it at all while in the Carribean, where we mostly have cold drinks at the ready, but need it now.  For the most part we've had a traditional glass/vacuum thermos but after several breakages I recently purchased a fancy stainless steel one... We'll after 4 hours in the pot the water is room temperature - terrible.  I'm not sure if it is the model, or simply the nature of the non-glass thermos but it certainly is NOT doing the job.

Kyle won't let me catch any of the rain water that keeps landing on us as he is seriously monitoring our water usage (we have way more than we'll need for the trip).... I'm tempted to mess with him but he checks so often there is no way I can sneak some in the tank without him knowing.

Food:  We kept it simple yesterday and for lunch we had mini-pizzas (bread rolls: split, covered and grilled) and for lunch some carton soup that I had left over from the USA (It expires June '09 so we'll have to have more of that on this trip).

Progress: Yesterday we made 130, So far on this trip we have traveled (through the water) 2409nm, and have 395 (straight line) to go.

Our arrival destination is Baltimore, Ireland and we are secretly hoping to get there sometime on Thursday (18th), where we plan to seriously deplete the hot water supplies of one of the local hotels, sleep, rest up, and get our body clocks back on the same schedule.


Karen said...

I’ve been waiting and waiting for the news that you finally got a much-needed break from the nasty weather. Thank goodness Mother Nature (and Poseidon?) obliged right before I imagine you were close to the verge of total fatigue and depression. But maybe you were already suffering a touch of delirium, Maryanne, if you confused a sailboat with the moon?! ;-) Just kidding of course! You and Kyle both have been through more setbacks, frustrations and scary times than most of us land-lubbers could ever dream of facing. And you’ve always come out on top. Way to go!

Only a few more days left... Wish I could be aboard to hear you yell, “Land ho!”

Happy sails!

Anonymous said...

Hi Sis!

I have been watching your blog and hoping that you got that much needed calm you have now!

I hope you both get to put some sleep in the rest bank!

See you soon!

lots of love sarah

kate said...

Hoorah for 3' waves and calmer winds! Oh, I'm SO GLAD to hear that. You two are an amazing team.

Anonymous said...

Maryanne and Kyle:
Very happy to see you are so close to Ireland. I am almost as tired as you, getting up before dawn to see how your last 24 hrs. went. Best wishes and have a few Guiness Stouts on me. Have the Pub bill me directly.
Your Friend and admirer