Monday, May 11, 2009

May 10, 2009 - Chagos Crawl, Day 9

We expect to arrive in Chagos tomorrow, and not a moment too soon. We're both so over the novelty of crossing oceans in a small boat. We're definitely over going to windward. As I fret about the passages ahead, Sten keeps reminding me that we have weeks, if not months, in Chagos before we have to come back out here and do this again.

This passage hasn't been that hard, and it certainly hasn't been dangerous or even very challenging from a sailing point of view. It has just been long. And monotonous. And that presents its own set of challenges. When we first set out on this trip, keeping the boat going was challenge enough. Now the three of us work so well together that the humans on board need to find something to keep ourselves occupied and stimulated while Mata'irea quietly goes about her job of getting us to safe harbor. In addition to keeping watch, sleeping, bathing (that daily shower is such a treat), feeding ourselves, tidying up, and emailing friends and family, each day Sten and I tackle projects to fill our time. When we had no wind a few days ago, I did some laundry and hung it out to dry (good thing about squalls - they desalinate the lifelines) and Sten went for a swim to scrape the barnacles off the propeller. Since then the wind has picked up, conditions have become more boisterous, and our projects have become less ambitious.

After towing our lures for over a thousand miles with only one other bite (a giant barracuda that we threw back a few days ago), late this afternoon we finally got out the skunk. We landed a 35 pound yellowfin tuna and released a second. After the intensity of landing, releasing, cleaning and packaging up the fish, all on the heaving back deck, we were not ready for a big cooking event so it was Campbell's chicken noodle soup for dinner.

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