Stars, Scalds and Swordfish

Easter Sunday 27th March 2016

08 55.491 S, 126 05.610 W – 760nm  to go

The stars are fantastic this evening, the sky is almost cloudless and the moon has yet to rise, allowing them to to take centre stage. I was going to start this post by saying that this will not go down as one of our favourite passages but instead find myself marvelling at the fact that I’m sitting here being pushed across an ocean by just the wind, we eat, we sleep, we read but Raya just keeps ploughing on. The night breeze is soft on my skin and the only noise is the occasional flap of the sail and the water rushing past our hull. The swell has finally reduced making everything much more comfortable. It seems churlish to complain.

The roll has been the main issue for most of the way and I am suffering because of it. Almost as the last scab flaked off my grazed shins I had another accident, this one potentially much more serious. While making my morning cup of tea on Thursday we were hit by a wave at a particularly awkward angle the boat lurched over, the kettle flew off the counter and its boiling contents splashed onto my side. Luckily my first aid training took over and I was in a cold shower within thirty seconds, I stayed there for ten minutes before Rick applied a cooling burns dressing. Our quick action seems to have contained the damage, it’s a bit messy but the pain is being controlled by codeine and I seem to be healing fine. The careful planning of the first aid supplies came in to their own, we had everything we needed and easily to hand. It certainly brought home, especially to Rick who was having to manage the situation, how vulnerable we are and how extra careful we have to be.

I loved Rachael’s response ” Mum, you sail half way around the world only to be taken out by a kettle, how English”

The lumpy seas have also curtailed our fishing, we did put the rod out one afternoon and it appears the Pacific is full of fish. Within an hour we had hooked a 5ft long sword fish, there was no way we could land him, luckily he broke the line and got away, but not before giving us a fantastic display, leaping from the water, showing off his power and grace. Half an hour later the line screamed again, this time it was a much more manageable 3ft dorado and supper.

The days slip by blending into each other, nothing but mile after mile of sea, great excitement if we see a bird, even more excitement if we can identify it in our Birds of the Pacific book. The visit of a large pod of dolphins kept us entertained for hours, first watching them then looking them up and finally rerunning the videos and photos we have taken of them. A small sailing boat popping up on the AIS or lights on the horizon are greeted with enthusiasm and emails from home bring a smile to our faces and are read aloud to be shared.

The miles to go counter now reads 750nm and the guides to Marquesas are being studied. Hoping for landfall on the afternoon of the first or the morning of the second, apparently  dramatic cliffs, waterfalls and pamplemousse await us.

7 thoughts on “Stars, Scalds and Swordfish

  1. what a rotten thing to happen – I mean the boiling kettle – stick to G+T and then much less hazardous – even at 6 in the morning – hope you are on the mend now – count yourselves lucky that at least you are away from the din of the EU referendum and are spared the endless arguments for and against Brexit Can wait to see the photos from the South Pacific when you make landfall. much love

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  2. Just like the song You just keep rolling along What a marvellous time you are having apart from your accidents you seem to be doing OK You shoud be reaching Montane first not stopping there?
    The Bay looks lovely in Hiva Oa calm enough to fix your sail furling mechanism You must be feeling very very proud of your selves getting this far with relatively very few snags apart from Roz and her cooking habits. Happy Sailing to you looking forward to more photos. Best wishes & love Bet & doug

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  3. one of the nice very british things on board for me was the “do you like a tea”…pleasure to wait for a nice freshly brewed cup of tea (for me with Ahorn Sirup), served wit a biscuit. Ric was always scared that something happens with the craddle and hot water might hit us, now we all know why. Lessons learned, but unfortunately it was you triying first. I wish you good and fast recovery Ros and that this was the last injury on the whole jurney. Take care and listen to Ric, …always. 🙂
    best wishes, Hartmut

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  4. Oh goodness poor you! Funnily enough RICK and I have been bantering to and fro with regard to the ongoing issue with his poorly ankle and nurse Jones of emergency ward 10 has been summoned from the past to take care of him whilst I m away at my mum s. Mum and I are currently looking out from the spinnaker tower cafe in Portsmouth and the busy traffic of ferries and boats on the sparkly water …a really nice sunny spring day. Will send you the memory of dr Kildare to help with your burns. Do take care and love to all xxx

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  5. Just checked progress and can see you are almost there – another ocean conquered. Well done!

    Hope your wounds are healing ok Roz and that you have all enjoyed the crossing. I am sure Ian will have the experience of a lifetime to look back on.

    Enjoy the celebratory beer.

    All the best,

    Phil and Julia x

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  6. Congratulations Rick & Roz you have made it to HIva Oa. Fantastic sailing.
    Sorry to hear about your accident Roz. Hope your arrival there has helped to ease the pain & the joy of being there takes over.
    Also well done Raya on her longest haul (3600nm). Look forward to seeing pics of the Island.
    Fond wishes
    Len & Diane

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