July 3, 2013-Passing the Point of the Middle Moon, or How my Coffee Cup Became Cracked.
wingssail images-fredrick roswold
I wake and see the sky is turning from dark blue to cyan. Dawn is coming.
I get up.
Judy and I trade places and I survey our surroundings. Water, water, more water. I turn on the computer and see that the next landmark, the Point of the Middle Moon, is still ahead of us, as it should be. According to my passage plan we will arrive there at 09:00. It is now only 06:00.
I need coffee with which to greet the sunrise but the stove won’t start. Propane must be out. Ah, yes, the log book shows 44 days on this tank. Is that a record? Anyhow, the tank must be empty. I get the adjustable wrench to change the propane tank and crawl aft on the crazily tilting and swaying deck toward the propane lockers. Its hard to hang on. The wrench is rusted, won’t adjust. Down to the workbench forward for some oil, then back for a second attempt.
Wrench fixed, propane changed, coffee cooking, I hear a chirp from the AIS receiver. A ship is drawing near. The computer shows it still an hour away.
I drink my coffee. Now I think of food: a hot bagel with pork and cheese and a cookie. And fresh coffee.
Beans need to be ground, they are Colombian beans, but bought in Antigua. Perhaps soon I will get to buy some a little closer to the source.
After breakfast I check the ship. Still 30 minutes away. Wash up. I notice the cracked handle of my Starbuck's cup. It happened during a previous wash up when another cup was dropped on it and cracked the handle. Good thing it wasn’t broken; these Starbuck's cups have been halfway around the world with us and a broken one would put a damper on the whole venture. Well, maybe not, I can get another.
On deck I adjust the solar panels for the early sun and find it’s getting hot in the cockpit. Time to put up the awning. I drag up the large awning and set it. The wind and tossing deck make it another struggle but the shade is nice when it is done .
I count 12 flying fish on deck. Judy hasn’t thrown them over so I do. "Back to Neptune," you guys.
The AIS chirps again and now I must watch that ship. The name is "Charmer", a tanker. We are on a collision course. I would turn but his course and speed is erratic. I don't know which way to go. He is the burdened vessel so I reach for the radio to ask him.
“Charmer, Charmer this is Wings.”
He answers, “Vessel calling, come back.”
We switch to 14.
“Charmer, this is Wings. How do we deal with this?”
“I will alter course,” he says.
“Thank you very much Captain.” That was easy.
I watch him pass on our starboard side; a small ship.
With the dishes done, tanker gone and the awning up, I decide I can relax in the shade.
I load some new music on my phone and get a new book.
Just as I settle down Judy is stirring. “What time is it?” she asks.
“Nine O’clock.” I say. It is time for her watch already.
“Where are we?”
“Just passing the Point of the Middle Moon.”
We trade places again.
Fred & Judy, SV Wings, On Passage.