15 February 2016 | 00 49.0'N 087 34.0'W
Steve & Kate Jenkins
All eyes are on the GPS as we drop down in latitude- at 7:30 am (Eastern time) we're at 00 50.68 N- about 11 hours from crossing the equator into the Southern hemisphere. The winds stayed pleasantly moderate yesterday all day (around 10-15 knots) which was more than we thought we'd get and on a beam reach we were able to move along nicely at 7kts. We also had a 2 knot current with us at times which was enormously helpful. The winds began to drop through the night and we turned on an engine briefly from 4 am-7 am just to keep us moving. The winds seem to have picked up little now so it's off again and we're bobbing along nicely in a quiet sea. Our ETA in Port Baquerizo on San Cristobal is now mid-morning tomorrow. A daytime landfall sure beats a nighttime one, especially in such a magical place.
The champagne is in the frig and salmon thawed (another Virginia foodstock) for our crossing celebration. We don't have costumes to greet the arrival of Neptune but a lot of other boats do- and have galas planned. We will compose a ditty or two and find a suitable "offering" to Neptune. Depending on the sea state, we may or may not take a dip and swim across the equator.
Yesterday was a quiet day- baked cinnamon-raisin bread in the morning, cleaned some stainless in the cockpit, turned the water back on in the toilets so we're not using milk jugs anymore (no rain since we left the Caribbean, no joke), listened to a book tape and had a lot of visiting boobies.
The first Red-footed booby began circling the boat when Hannah was up front- flying in long, lazy circles around the boat. It's circles became ever tighter and she was afraid it was going to dive bomb her as it kept swooping down right in front of her. When she returned to the cockpit, the bird landed on the pulpit railing and was shortly joined about 7 friends who unrolled their sleeping bags for the night- three on each pulpit railing and two on the bowsprit. The slumber party is just now breaking up as they are beginning to get hungry and go in search of breakfast. They bickered some but were a lot of fun throughout the night. They are significantly larger than your "Target" seagulls as Hannah said- and have large red feet and beautiful blue bills.
Need to do some laundry today and get the boat shipshape for the Galapagos as there will be numerous inspectors coming on board when we arrive. Ugh... but it is the Galapagos so all is good