Having the yacht heavily heeled over with waves smashing over the bow is one of the most effective wake up calls to have on board (capsizing is number one on that list).
23 Jan 2014
530am – About half hour before the other watch (Starboard) got off, we were hit by a squall in the dark. Starboard watch struggled to get their 2nd reef in and was prepping for the 3rd as we came on deck to help.
6am – Officially taking over the watch from 6 to 1pm.
7am – A constant patter of rain opened the day as dawn broke, it was only with sunlight that we spotted our main sail’s top “slider” (something that holds the sail to the mast) had broken loose thus requiring our sail maker “sea pup Sophie” to be summoned.
Strapped on and equipped, we slowly elevated Sophie up the mast with two halyards. She spent a good hour or so sewing the slider back onto the sail as we continued our sail.
8am – Slowly the misty clouds cleared and I shouted LAND AHOY! in excitement! We have arrived at Papau New Guinea! (PNG) (well, kind of arrived “at”)
10am – I had to head to the galley for my first lunch mother duty; hot dogs and onions wrapped in a baguette. It took me a while getting used to the galley (kitchen), locating the utensils and condiments sprawled all over. Diced and sautéed the onions, boiled the hot dogs and toasted and pan-fried the baguette with a thin layer of butter.
11am to 1pm (Happy-Hour) – We had a good 10 knots of wind and decided to bring the spinnaker out. I was responsible for fixing the halyard (rope to bring the sail upwards), and act as the human sail-tie. Whose job includes sitting on and hugging the sail as we fed it up into the air. It all went well until the working sheet (line) slipped off the winch, giving rise to a owl glass twist. With composed shouts from the Skip, our lovely spinnaker was tucked away safely below deck out of harm’s way.
3pm to 4pm – A school of Dolphins!!!! spotted astern (behind) us for a good 15 minutes as we sailed along the coast of PNG. My camera batteries were flat 😦
7pm – By dusk, the wind died again and our watch rigged up the windseeker and pole in the dark with the intention to scrap any breeze but left them on deck as the wind was being quite indecisive on where and when to make its appearance which is FRUSTRATING.
Also, things always seem to get worse.. I found that our wind instruments went out of action as we drifted northeast of PNG. A fog crept around us, taking away our visibility. There was an eery feel to it, almost Silent Hill-like and at times witnessing huge logs passing us by.
really elated to see land. thought that day would never come