Passage Report…..

Dear F&F,
June 5-7, 2009

I continue to be sleep challenged. Last night I had the 8:00 pm to midnight watch. I was nice & drowsy by the end. Took a hot shower & hopped into bed. One hour later I am awakened by Scott snoring. I moved up to the salon with a book in hopes of being able to nod off up there. Nope. The eyelids just did not get heavy again. I stayed awake reading until Mike\’s shift was over and Scott got up to relieve him. Yippee – the cabin was all mine and I slept great for 4 hours. Scott and I are switching our watches so that he will be On as I go Off, thus our cabin will be mine for those 4 hours. We\’ll see how that goes. It works out conveniently to switch tonight on are \”dog watches\” which are 2 hours each. Having 4 hours sleep is the magic number. Two per day is just not enough. On four I feel quite fine. I totally understand the separate bedrooms for sleeping concept. For safety reasons, I think having a 3rd crew on the long passages is a good idea, but on shorter ones, I will try to remember to make up the guest bed and use it for myself when off. Mostly we\’ve let it become the \”garage\” overflow when it\’s just the two of us. But we are managing fine with Mike in there, so should be able to keep it as a sleeping cabin for me when needed.

I have written lots more in my head, but computer is THE WORST for bringing on seasickness & mostly I am fine, so I just can\’t write like I wish I could. I try to go stretch my body & lie down during my off time, even if I can\’t sleep. I am trying to do stretches, but it isn\’t the same as taking a walk or a swim. I am looking forward to both of those activities! My ankles are sore since I stand a lot & the joints are constantly in motion with the undulations of the boat.

I braised ribs in the pressure cooker the other night. I bought them pre-marinated in Costa Rica. They came out great. Nice to have scalding oil contained in a pot with a locking lid! Last night was hot dogs. Tonight will be chicken quesadillas. The guys seem content. I often skip the heavier dinners that I feed them and just have yogurt with granola later on my watch. Mike baked English Muffin Bread that was dee-licious! I baked \”plantain muffins\” that came out really well. Just a little different flavor than regular bananas.

Hopefully we will reach the halfway mark today. It is pretty good conditions today. We are going about 8 knots with the spinnaker. The swell is not too big, so not surfing fast, so overall the noise onboard is a bit less. The guys are having a blast. I am doing fine and it is nice to see Scott have a buddy. Mike is sweet to me too.

We are closely watching a piece of track at the top of the mast that is pulling away from the force of the sail up day in day out. We hope to avoid sending Scott or Mike up there while underway. Nothing on a boat lasts very long. We\’ve had a partially \”reefed main\” since day three with the mainsail track coming away from the top of the mast.

Friday we saw a ship. That is very rare out in the open ocean, far offshore. The AIS showed the name to be \”Keifuku Maru 2\”, a Japanese fishing vessel. It was daytime & they were easily seen. Scott hailed them intermittently for an hour without response. It was hard to tell if they were adjusting their course to avoid us even though they did not communicate with us. They appeared to turn every which way, in circles even. Finally someone did respond from their boat. In a thick Japanese accent they greeted us. They sounded as surprised to see a sailboat out here as we were to see their ship. He asked if we needed anything and we said not. Later we kicked ourselves for not asking for some sushi! He now definitively turned his ship to avoid us and wished us a Bon Voyage. Never a dull moment.

Scott & Cindy