Wednesday, August 6, 2014

back in the USVI!

"As you travel down the road of life, be sure to stop to eat the roses" (Far Side) continues.

I needed to get Andrew's sailboat back before I left, so Stewart and I decided to be a bit insane and, warmly dressed, sailed the Hobie back to Jackknife Harbor in an intermittent storm. At times the rain came down so hard that, despite a nice breeze, the hissing droplets flattened the waves leaving only our wake, creating patterns behind us that I've never seen before. I brought nothing with me but my wetsuit, but Stewart had his phone camera.

I planned to take the last bus of the evening (8:45) to the airport Sunday, then spend the rest of the night there and catch my 6:15 flight...but the bus driver slowed, said "All full! Sorry!" and drove on. The next bus (3:15) would get me there at 5:00....barely OK....but it worked out well, thanks to my mom who was willing to get up that early to bring the car back home. Then the flight into JFK was waved off for another approach and I needed to walk/jog about a half mile and catch a shuttle bus to catch my next flight while it was still boarding. Excitement and exercise and success!

Boat did fine while I was away, despite Bertha. The chafing guard I installed on my mooring line has a hole in it, but the line is fine. Some of the things I sealed are not 100% watertight and I see some stainless steel stanchions cracking, so am wondering what to do about THAT. Had some wonderful brief intense showers yesterday that filled my water tank....and I think my other tank has a leak. The joys of boat ownership! (I confess to still enjoying it)

Yesterday I wrestled the sails back into place (they were stored safely inside the boat), sailed slowly up to Johnson Bay (where the water is clean and clear and I saw two surprised turtles), and caught a mooring. Then emerged a couple hours later with lots of tiny shrimplike critters in hair and on skin and the bottom of the boat far smoother.....and about ten or twenty jacks well fed on the debris scraped off. Once again, I slept on the bow until I got chilly, then went below where it is a bit warmer and far darker: the moon light hardly comes in.

Had a very nice sail this morning, the boat moving far better with the bottom clean. Sailed almost to Salt Pond, then back, getting more spray than I recall ever getting on this boat...and big whitecaps. (and a bit of nausea...hmmm). Now back in Coral Harbor, cleaning, modifying, repairing, and writing.

Maybe it is now time for more sailing... or another nap.

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