Friday, July 04, 2008

July 3, 2008 - Darwin Dash, Day 6

Coral Sea Sunrise

We must be passing through some shipping lanes. The last time we had this much activity on our radar was on our approach to the Panama Canal. At one point on my watch last night I had three ships on our radar screen, one of which was close enough that I felt the need to hail them on the radio, just to make sure they knew we were out here. There was no response, but then I didn't really expect one. As long as my voice crackling over the VHF makes whomever is on watch take a closer look at their radar screen, that's good enough for me.

We have seen so few ships on our travels in the Pacific. We're both a bit nervous about the cruising we have ahead of us these next few months in much more heavily trafficked waters. A few nights ago Sten commented, "I might be able to cross an ocean, but I don't know the rules of the road." I responded that "I'm sure they are just like racing rules, but you know, with really big boats." Figuring that there might be a bit more to it than that, we pulled out a laminated card that we purchased 3 years ago with the right of way rules on it and had a refresher course.

Dinner tonight was fantastic. We had aged rib eye (well aged after 2 months in our freezer) in a sauce that was a riff on au poivre. Delicious.

On the net tonight we learned that we have made steady progress on catching up to Kika. Two nights ago they were 120 miles ahead of us. Tonight it was only 65. We might be cruisers now, but the latent racer in each of us can't resist the challenge of trying to catch the boat in front of us. We've just got to keep in mind that we can't call "buoy room" or "no barging" on any of these ships out here.

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