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_________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Marcy home Walvis Bay Angling Club club AFASyn Ushuaia Marcy and crew

Friday, March 30, 2007

Day 9, N10 deg 25 min, W 119 deg 35 min 9:00AM (Ginger)

We're still in the "reinforced trades" but these trades weren't reinforced in California they were supersized in Las Vegas I'm sure! We spent all night in 40 kts of wind with 10-12 foot seas slapping us around, flying just our storm staysl. We were rolling gunnel to gunnel at times and I ended up sleeping in the cockpit because it's like being in a (not so fun) fun house down below. We heard the other 3 boats from Zihua check in yesterday evening and they're sailing with their sails winged out
in 15 knots with 3 foot seas. They were actually complaining about the motion of their boats until we checked in. Such is the difference of a couple hundred miles. With such wind you'd think we would have really racked up some miles but we will have gone only 155 miles or so for our noon to noon reading. A respectable number but I was hoping for a little more to show for our athletic efforts last night. Our trip odometer says 1175 miles right now. We're definitely on the midnight express to
the Marquesas.
A funny thing happened as all this wind came up the other night. We took on a little water and closed every vent and hatch. It was 85 degrees in the cabin and very humid. After an hour or two, much to our horror, the smell of wet dog began to emanate from some unknown source. This wasn't just the "oh, the dog went swimming" kind of smell. This was the middle of winter, too many cross country ski trips with the dogs in the car kind of smell. The kind that once had a nicely heeling dog stop in
his tracks in a crosswalk and then turn to come to my car and see what all those good smells were, and the dogs weren't even with me then. Anyway, there we were, just us, the heat, the waves and the dog smell. Good thing we had our sea legs because that could have done me in. Early the next morning Peter joined me in the cockpit - the smell had gotten pretty bad by then. We'd been talking for about 40 minutes when I mentioned that I could even smell it in the cockpit. Peter decided it was his
fleece and removed the offending object. To no avail. Several hours later, sitting by myself in the cockpit same smell only stronger. Finally upon close inspection it was our Crazy Creek camping chair. They're much more comfortable than just sitting on the cockpit bench and that chair was definitely a favorite of River's on every hike. So, though long gone, the dogs are still making their little dog jokes on us. The chair is now on deck far from the cockpit awaiting our first and probably second
squall and a lot of soap.
The winds have calmed a bit and we've got the jib back out. It keeps the motion of the boat a bit steadier. Peter has a maintenance project planned today so we'll see if we get a little more settling comfortable enough to work in the bilge.
Our waypoint for turning south to cross the ITCZ is 5N, 130W. We're making good progress toward that point and once across should find calmer winds in the south. I called Don Anderson, weather guru, yesterday to confirm the times he's on the radio. It's kind of like calling your local news anchor man to ask for which headlines pertain just to your interests. Especially since weather is our big headline. He confirmed these trades should be calming over the next 4 days but didn't seem surprised
to hear our conditions. Not only does he give weather on several radio nets in Mexico and answers any questions on those nets but he also answers specific questions on two longer range frequencies and we may want to call him as we get further south.
Happy Friday!

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