Dear F&F,
June 13, 2009

The wind gods had pity on me during my dog watch yesterday evening. With just 2 knots more wind, our speed was better and managing the helm easier. I was worn out from wallowing in negativity so slept quite well from 8:30 pm until 3:00 a.m. I could tell the boat was sailing slow again, from the motion and the sounds. I was hoping Mike would say it was time to motor, but no such luck. He handed me the auto pilot remote with instructions for the wind angle parameters that had been working for him. I made a cafe au lait & sat down to my task. There I was, in the dark with a half moon & plenty of stars beginning the 4:00 a.m. shift. I focused on the screens & the numbers but I also made sure to look out at the waves & up at the edge of the sail. Somehow I was doing it. I was keeping the boat moving. Creeping slowly over each swell, not getting stuck in the trench but riding to the top of the next with momentum. Mike said \”the sail will collapse if you steer left into the teens\”. I managed to avoid doing that. I did get too low (away from the wind) a few times, but could drive up (toward the wind) & recover from each lull. I knew Scott would be up for his morning net about 6:30 a.m., so I didn\’t have to think about enduring the full 4 hours. I just wanted to get through until sunrise. A new day. And Scott\’s company. I could do it. And I did.

Scott had his check-in with our fellow passage makers then asked for breakfast. So happy was I to cast aside my Helm Hat & don the Goddess of the Galley gown! We ate Mike\’s bread toasted with cream cheese & jam. He sat with me. Yesterday I did end up \”sharing my pain\” with him & he stayed close to me the rest of the day. He keeps telling me that this is the longest passage we are likely to ever make. Ever. Wow. That doesn\’t completely sink in. But what I think he intends for me to hear is that if I can just get through this, it will not be this hard for this long in the future.

I know some of you probably imagine that I\’d want to just let 3 guys take the boat on the next crossing & fly to meet them. But I would hate to hear: \”Hon, you should have been there, it was awesome! The wind was steady, the seas were calm, you would have loved it!\”. No, I am stubborn plus I am stuck like glue on Scott & can\’t bear to think of him out here without me. He would be fine. But I would miss him too much.

It is too soon to say the end is in sight, but we are down to 642 miles to go. Our Velocity Made Good (the speed in the direction that matters) is averaging 6. If I\’m doing the math correctly we will be there in 4 1/2 days. I can do 4 1/2 days. Heck, I\’ve just done 2 weeks! I\’ve got shrimp defrosting & will cook it with garlic served on rice. Mike & I have been enjoying the balsamic dressed beets. Scott sweetly enjoys whatever I hand him. We are a good team. Scott is napping. Mike is steering. I get another dog watch (only 2 hours), happy day!

We are getting there. Perhaps I have had just a bit too much time to think. The ocean is vast and yet my mind keeps drifting inwards. I will be eager to explore the island above & below. Thank you for keeping me company on my ups & downs, (lefts, rights & sideways…)

Cindy at Sea, Day #14