Saturday, June 28, 2008

Thundering first night at sea

Most of yesterday and during the night we had overcast skies with short showers which briefly robbed the wind from the area and left the boat rolling on the swell with the sails flogging. Still by manually steering through these calms it was possible to continue making headway and after about an hour of concentration at the helm, the wind returned and the ever vigilant wind-vane could take over again. With cloud covering most of the sky and the moon not rising until after midnight, the night was very dark, with just a few stars breaking through the clouds. With no visible horizon the world seemed to contract around us. That was until lightening flashes in the distance briefly illuminated the sea beyond the confines of the cockpit. The electrical show continued throughout the night. As we got closer, we heard the accompanying thunder which seemed to be transmitted through the water before reverberating through the hull. Fortunately the gap between the lightening flashes and thunder rumbles remained sufficient for us not to be too concerned for our safety, although the flashes got noticeably brighter and the rumbles louder.

The other event of note was seeing two fishing boats in the night. Our radar detector, which has remained inactive since we left New Zealand, started flashing and eventually the lights of the radar wielding boats came into view.

Late yesterday afternoon we caught a decent sized tuna - perfectly timed as we'd finished the last of our fish. That said we decided we should use up some bacon we bought in Santo which had been sadly neglected in our recent seafood bonanza. Seems we're always eating what's just about to go off. We made a mixture of green bean, bacon, potato and yam which could have turned into a hash but we were saved mainly due to the delicious locally cured bacon. Today was been tuna feast day. Last night I used the last of our coconut milk to make poisson cru, which we polished-off for lunch. Even in our most enthusiastic whiskless mayonnaise making moods, it still seems like too much work to extract milk from raw coconuts. We've tried - stripping out the coconut flesh then wringing the milk out of it - but only once. So now our cans of coconut milk are exhausted we'll have to think of other inventive ways to use the tuna. Fortunately we've plenty of wasabi and soy sauce for sashimi but it seems to be an acquired taste - I've acquired it, whereas Charlotta is trying not to acquire it, "you eat THAT but it's raw..". As a comprise tonight's menu was marinaded tuna steaks on rice.Once the showers cleared this morning, we've had a great day's sailing, making around 6 knots on a reach with 10-15 knots of wind from SSE in a small swell. Couldn't wish for an easier start.

Position @ 11:59 (GMT +11) S13° 08.4' E164° 01.7'
Distance to "Indispensable Reef": 201
Daily run: 128

No comments: