WHAT IS BUTT DUST? - REPORT - DAY 11
27 April 2010 | Underway from Mexico to Marquesas
Last night spoke on the VHF with a ship that was getting close fast, and had the experience of speaking with a woman with an American accent, on watch, who responded, yes, they had me on their radar, and had been tracking me since I was 14 miles away. They passed close astern of us. So helpful.
Started the engine this morning to charge the batteries and the wind had fallen light, so furled the jib and engaged the propeller and autopilot. Motored/sailed (mizzen still up) for 4 Â½ hours.
While this was happening, watched for ships and repaired the spare mainsail, which had a little wear and tear along the leech. Chicken Chinese style with steamed rice for lunch, plus ship's ration of one cold beer each.
S/V Tomboy, husband and wife crew, broke a lower shroud - pin came loose. They will go to Sicorro Island, about 300 miles offshore, where the Mexican Navy has a base, for repairs, rather than continue their voyage to the Marquesas with rigging weakened. We passed Sicorro Is. 6 days ago.
Been struggling with an either/or the last 2 days. Either the boat goes on course to waypoint 05 deg N, 130 deg W (turn to port, head south across the ITCZ)in which case it rolls horribly, plates crash and the headsail flaps and flogs OR - it steers to West of the rumb line in which case it sails faster, more comfortable motion, and the headsail stays full and happy. Guess which one I chose. This waypoint is still 580 miles away. Wind is just not quite the right angle, and when it falls light the boat wallows and the headsail is made noisy and crumpled, by the jostling waves. I want the wind to stay strong, and to back into the NNW.
I write this on watch at 20 to 4 in the morning. The full moon backlights the clouds and also lights up the path ahead. How is it things so beautiful resist description? The same eyes with which I appreciate such loveliness search the horizon, for ships.
Leave you with a laugh.
This particular Sunday sermon....'Dear Lord,' the minister began, with arms extended toward heaven and a rapturous look on his upturned face. 'Without you, we are but dust...' He would have continued but at that moment my very obedient daughter who was listening leaned over to me and asked quite audibly in her shrill little four year old girl voice, 'Mom, what is butt dust?'