susys running away to sea

"The rigors (sic) of an expeditionary lifestyle"

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Tuesday 1 August

Extremely windy this morning - leaving delayed - J changing oil and fuel filters. Me to cafe for coffee.
We did leave eventually, and sorry to leave such a beautiful place, but it's ever onwards ...

You're cracking along with all sails set and drawing, on the wind, but getting up to 7 knots. The little crosses on the chart are galloping across the Strait towards Black Duck Cove - back to Newfoundland. Labrador changes to Quebec to starboard. It's overcast, but not cold. There are no other boats around as usual, and it's fantastic. Then the wind pipes up a bit - and a bit more and then even more. The waves heave and foam and the sky gets several shades darker. We are in a boat that tacks through 60-70-80 degrees when you're lucky - and we'd like to get into harbour before night. So it's back to noisy old motor sailing. J down below, navigating - me steering. J can't believe his luck - crew who likes - prefers - to be on deck. There's only so much admiring the bunk cushions I can do. I hum selections from Traviata and Carmen.

Coming into Black Duck Cove, it's 6 fathoms and shoaling. Only the mizzen is up and J takes it down. This involves my getting covered in canvas, while trying to steer a heavy boat under forward gear only - no throttle - into the wind, against shoaling surf. Later, I did request we lower the mizzen earlier - J likes it to steady the boat (yes, indeed), but I'd bag it sooner. J disagrees.

We come to the wharf. I'm ashore on the stern line, another guy on the bow. "Slacken the stern," goes J. "Just keeping it slightly under tension," says I. "As am I."

Somebody's tired.


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