REPORT - DAY FOUR
20 April 2010 | Underway from Mexico to Marquesas
IT HAS BEEN A QUIET DAY.
Flat calm, and the wind generated by our passing is all we have, or maybe a few knots from ahead. Engine throbbing, chugging, viiibrating. (Not a misspelling, I need more words and don't have a thesaurus!) Thooousands of square miles of calm.
I took a nice hot shower today! Had a cold beer with lunch! In French Polynesia beer (all alcohol) is very expensive, so we stocked up; we are carrying lots of beer, rum, tequila and wine, not just for us but hoping to trade for fruit and veg in the islands.
Last night we stopped the engine to cut the noise so I could check in on the radio - to the Pacific Seafarer's Net, (oh, and don't forget you can go on to www.pacsea.org and see our position reported daily, and, by downloading Google Earth on to your computer these coordinates can show you our track!) --- anyway, when we went to put the engine in forward gear, nothing happened! To get us going I just pushed the lever on the gearbox by hand. Today I disconnected the old forward-reverse cable and found it was partially destroyed where it had been touching the bare exhaust pipe. I'd bought a replacement while in Panama, so I got it out and fitted it (all this time stopped and rolling on a calm glassy sea)- and while I was at it, I wrapped some fibreglass cloth around the bare steel part where the cable got burned.
Long story - hope you're not bored already - consequently the need to take a shower! Those nasty itchy little bits if glass in your skin! And we had topped up the water tank with the watermaker 2 days in a row, so there's enough water to take a shower. Engine has been going 36 hrs at this point - motoring through hundreds of miles of NO Wind. So HOT water too!!
The nights are quiet. As to ships - I have been tracking one for an hour - he's closing with us - can just see him, like a faint star, 10 miles off, see him on the radar too. But last night - nothing.
Still using the engine - may have to burn fuel for 500 miles! We have to get out to the NE trades!
Reading New York Times bestsellers, and Dick Francis, Nora Roberts. Tracking West.
Sun rising behind me now, on Day Five.