Sunday, January 26, 2014

Sailing Along - Curacao to Colombia

This was a rougher sail then the one to Curacao!  We were rocking a fair deal which makes everything a bit harder – anything you put down on the counter has to be on a non-skid mat to keep it from flying, standing in one place is achieved by taking a wide stance and hoping no one trips over your feet, putting on pants is suddenly a challenge and often accomplished by sitting down (toddler style), showers feel risky and sleeping is tough. I don’t feel in danger of falling out of my bunk but the rocking definitely kept me up through the night.  On the last night before arrival things had calmed down a bit and I got 4 straight hours of sleep (plus 4 not so great hours) so felt quite refreshed and ready to go!

On such a short sail the General Store didn’t open but I did visit Slapps for the first time.  Basically the general store for the adults/pro crew, Slapps is mainly alcohol and cigarettes, neither of which interest me, but there were also Mars bars selling for “one money” each.  Balance payable in Euro or US dollars, not that “funny coloured see through money” (ie. Canadian).

I took the opportunity on this sail to stand a night watch with the students.  My goal is by the end of the semester to have stood every night watch at least once.  The only one I might not be able to do is 6-8 as I start in galley at 6:30.  This sail I stood the 2200-2400 watch after a post-galley nap.  It ended up falling on the night we changed time zones so it was a 2.5 hour watch (students normally stand 2 hours of night watch) but I also got to bed a half hour earlier then expected.  It was great to be up on deck with a purpose and great to feel the (relative) solitude of the ship at night.  My helming was a bit wonky to start with, the mate on watch called me out for being 15 points off course but I got the hang of it soon.

A highlight of this sail was seeing flying fish for the first time.  Or rather, seeing them live for the first time as we’ve eaten them on board twice!  They are incredible!  Pretty tiny, maybe 6 inches long, but able to fly through the air for (so I’ve heard) up to 200 metres!  I didn’t see any fly that far, probably 20 metres but still quite amazing.

Overall this sail felt a little more like survival then enjoyment, hoping for smoother waters next time!

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