I was escorted out of Georgia by a pair of dolphins.
A great omen to start any trip and as the day has progressed, it has only gotten better. Having put out the paravane polls even before entering the sound, I left the birds on deck, waiting until he water was deeper (I like at least 25 to 30 feet). As the morning progressed however, I didn’t need them. The little wind there had been has produced these little half foot waves from the southwest. As my course in to the northeast, I have a little following sea, which the Kadey Krogen does particularity well with.
Now almost 10 hours later, not much has changed. The waves have grown to one foot and there is a long period swell from the east, so occasionally I get a bigger roll, maybe 5° to each side, with a small constant roll of a few degrees. I still have not deployed the paravanes and at this point, maybe another 1.5 hours to anchor, I probably won’t. But I been reminded how much I love the ocean and I realize that I have not had conditions so benign since late summer.
As I planned my route north these last months, I would look at the ant trail of my previous trip south and an unpleasant feeling would settle in my stomach. The realization that even though I love being on the ocean and have always tried to maximize my ocean time, for I love the air, the color of the sea, the expanse of sky, I had also had a hard winter of it.
Oh, no, not like, virtually everyone reading this. I had no days, weeks and months of frigid winds, mind numbing cold and countless shovel fulls of snow, ice and then coaxing the car to start.
No, it hasn’t been like that, but as I looked at my previous journey, down the coast from Rhode Island, across the Gulf Stream to the Bahamas and back, during the last 6 months, I realized that I had let myself press on ever worsen conditions on a day to day or week to week basis.
In other words, I would tell myself that it’s not so bad, only a little worse than the week before.
Now, of course, I do have the paravanes, which are a great equalizer, but I had forgotten how pleasant the ocean can be and normally is!
I have also let the schedule push me, not in any unsafe manner, but certainly I have put up with a lot of discomfort.
So today, has been Mother Nature’s way of resetting by expectations.
This summer planning the trip across the North Atlantic, I fully expect conditions to be similar to today. And if they are not, I will wait until they are. But I also know, that Dauntless ready and able to dance on those waves when she has to.
I ended up deploying the paravanes, as the last hour the winds had picked up and that built 3 foot waves off my stern quarter. We were rolling, not much, the usual, 15 degrees in each direction. I made hasty decision to thrown in the birds that had been resting on deck all day.
In they went, and the ride settled down, but then I stressed about getting them back. Why, you ask?
Because about the same time, my auto pilot went TU. If you don’t know what that means, ask one of your friends who has been in the military, and if you don’t have a friend like that. Umm, I suppose there is such a thing as a free lunch.
So, with no autopilot, I could not do my usual of setting it and retrieving the birds. I had to use the never before contingency plan 4102, anchor in the channel, retrieve paravanes, haul anchor and haul ass.
Worked like a charm. I took less than ten minutes and it was nice to do that without worrying where in hell the boat was going.
Another hour later, I am happily anchored at big Bay Cheek. Turns out the peninsula that is on the other side of the creek, is full of houses. New houses by the looks of it, or better said, house built since the last hurricane wiped them out.
Don’t you love a political system where you can pretend to be anti-governemt, tea oarty, right winger, etc, but then every ten years get a new house, since you have subsidized house insurance because you were so smart you built in a clear flood plain. And before you think I am a Democrat, the Democrats allow all the crap to happen. We have truly reached a point of total me, me, me in this country. And our politicians are leading the parade.
Sorry, I got carried away.
OK, for all of you that I haven’t offended and are still reading, I hoping I found the fault with the autopilot.
Tomorrow, we shall see what we shall see.
Thanks for Reading
P.S. I think Microsoft Word has the solution to the Washington mess. When the spell check got to politicians, it suggested pelicans. Not a bad idea at all. Replace everyone in Washington with pelicans. Can be any worse. At least we’ll get realistic fish quotas.
On an Obama can even be an eagle, or is that his wife?