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Saturday, October 1, 2011

Sleigh ride to Niue!!

Ship's Log

Lat 13 degrees 56 min S

Lon 159 degrees 42 min W

I swear Neptune knows when Co-cap Cath is on watch! Every time I am on watch, it seems, the winds pipe up, the seas become menacing, and I experience at least one unexpected downpour...! Oh well, 99% of solving a problem is recognizing that we have a problem - hence on my watches I now take my rain gear, complete with sou'easter (rain hat)all in fashionable sunshine yellow, I make sure all sheets and lines are clear and ready for action, give clear directions to whichever crew member is on watch with me and then hold tight with a big smile on my face :-) No problem!!!

The other night was no exception - I had mid- watch and came up at 100 hours (Bill and Nick had the 1st watch from 2000 hours until 100 hours) listened to their watch report that all was excellent with clear starry skies good wind and Monty, our Monitor Wind vane, was holding us on our course. Min was sleeping so with conditions so ideal I just let her sleep... yup you guessed it, as soon as Co-Cap Bill and Midshipman Nick were below decks nicely in their berths all H--- broke loose. A huge front rapidly moved in and set Terrwyn on her side, heeling 20-30 degrees with gusts of wind coming on our starboard at times up to 35 knots. On went my rain gear and I thought I would sit it out, but back up came Bill and Nick ready to furl the jib and reef the main (we already had one reef in)... that set her back on her feet and we were able to ride out that little storm quite nicely.

So last night I was ready on my watch for the worst and ... Neptune did not disappoint me... another nasty little (?) front came through with all of the above... the only difference was that I had already furled the jib (with Min's help) and we had wisely put 2 reefs in the mainsail. Now I would never want to enrage Neptune by thumbing my nose at him... but I did feel a need to give a gentle wave of acknowledgment to the ol' boy!

Onward with our adventures as we head for the Palmerston Atoll where we have decided to make a brief stop although one of us will need to be on anchor watch at all times as we will be anchoring in very deep (i.e. 9 fathoms) of water outside of the lagoon as the pass is too shallow for us to go through. We have about 300 nm to go to Palmerston, so should be there in a couple of days... after that we will head on to Niue (the smallest self governing nation in the world and we belong to their largest little yacht club, NYC (Niue Yacht Club), of 1500 virtual members in the world... funnily none of the local yacht club members even own a boat :-)but they provide wonderful mooring buoys and huge smiles of welcome to us weary sailors!

Oh must go... Bill is waiting in the cockpit for happy hour before we have our Sunday Dinner of ham, scalloped potatoes, corn and coleslaw... mmmm that makes me hungry just writing it! Oh and don't forget the Sunday dinner bottle of wine :-)

Fair winds

Cath and Bill and crew
SV Terrwyn

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