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The cruising moments you don't expect.....
The following is an excerpt from my passage log, from a 36 hour run in company with friends on the Queensland coast. I share it here as maybe It sums up for me the unexpected, inexplicable moments of cruising I didn't ask for, but that now have me hooked.
After a few carefree days in Civilisation we have now finally left in company with Whimaway to again try and take advantage of a very small weather window.
The forecast is far from ideal. The seas and winds are big and still on the nose, but are mean't to be decreasing. If we can't make this weather window work then we are stuck in here for probably another week if not longer.
Have had an uncomfortable start to the passage beating into large but decreasing seas. We are taking it ok, but if we were honest neither of us really want to be out here right now. Josie is a little queazy, Pizza for dinner while watching sunset. Have invited Whimaway to swim over for sundowners, but so far no takers.
Jo and Sophie have gone to bed and conditions aboard had improved considerably. The boat's motion is now quite comfortable, and the seas are reasonable. Listening to Dire Straits, starting to see stars, and moon is out. How quickly things can change.......
Early hours of the morning and we have a warm westerly at 15 knots!! Sheets eased and the moon is shining as dolphins swim past us and it is a truly magic sail. With the warm onshore breeze, I can smell the land, like I can really smell the trees, the beaches and the warmth. The boat is moving beautifully on seas that look like they were made just for us. I decide not to wake Josie for her watch.
I think about the people asleep in the towns I am sailing past, I can see their lights in the distance and I wonder if they know we are out here.
I think about my friends and family in Sydney, in that bustling city, I think about what their day would of been like, and realize how different my life now is from theirs. While they know we are out here, they probably would not be able to understand this moment.
I put down my book, and hit play on the stereo. Norah Jones this time. I really feel truly and utterly alive. The anxiousness of previous passages has been replaced by complete elation over the wonder of really being alive and of being privileged enough to be out here experiencing all of this.
Whimaway has just passed us, they look to be heading right out, maybe trying to find the current. I look at our speed, not only are we moving wonderfully before the wind, but we are also benefitting from at least 2 knots of current. I think about calling them on the radio again, curious if they are getting any more current than us out there, but it may wake Josie.
5AM Still sailing beautifully, led down on the deck and just watched the stars for 20 minutes. First light has just hit. Have put the camembert and ham in the croissants for breakfast, will put them in the warmer soon and wake Josie for breakfast.
In planning this trip I had expected to enjoy the pretty places we would see, the islands and the beaches, the reefs we would snorkel and to have fun meeting the new people we would meet, however it was these quiet but magic moments on my sailboat moving easily before the wind and the moon that I had not expected.
'Life is either a daring adventure or nothing' - Helen Keller
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