04 October 2013

Day 13 - Lost My Sea Legs!

September 27, 2013

Ahrgggg, I lost my sea legs!

For the first time in 10 days I slept without rolling from side to side in my bunk. I don't feel 'land sick' anymore, and I can walk down the street in a straight line, without the rolling gait of a pirate.

That's the good news.

We had our last breakfast in the mountains, and then took a bus back to Vitoria, the sea, and Fiona.

At the yacht club we met Eric and decided to have lunch together downtown before we picked up the 2 cases of rum he had ordered from a local market.

Taking on urgent supplies
Back at the dock, John and the Captain reviewed the GRIB wind forecast. Eric decided it would be bit “bumpy” out there, but Fiona would head south today, regardless. He had his date with Antarctica to keep.

That was the bad news.

As we were leaving dock, the crews from Tara (Dutch boat), Plankton (Brazilian) and Margaret Jane (South African) all gave us a wary “good luck!” look. They were all staying in port for another day, until the gale force winds moderated.

Our companions: Tara and Plankton
I would not call the water or the ride “bumpy”, but more like “are you crazy?” We took pills for sea-sickness, we had wrist bands, we ate crystalized ginger... but nothing worked. We had lost our sea legs. I took to my bunk, trying to think happy thoughts, but all I could think of was the color green.

John was better than I (he also had no choice -- he had work to do while we were heading out), but even he felt a bit queasy beating into those 10 foot waves. We even refused the traditional Happy Hour rum (imagine that) and supper. We were in pretty bad shape.

Eric kept feeling sorry for us “kids” and kept promising the motion would get better soon. Well, it didn’t. Remember when I wrote about Thunder Mountain? Same, but this time it was the Space Mountain ride. The night was pitch black, with no moon and no stars; the ship went up, crashed down randomly, wiggled sideways, and splashed waves of cold water into the cockpit and into our faces. We had our complete foul weather gear on; boots, pants, warm socks, jackets and hoods.

We drew for watches. John 8-10, I 10-12, Eric 12-2. Since I was 'off watch' for a couple hours, I went straight to bed. Although I still felt queazy, I was able to sleep -- I do like the rocking motion when I am lying down.

I woke up startled at 11:30. Nobody had called me for my 10pm watch. My first thought was, “what if John fell overboard and couldn’t call me?” I sprang out of bed and ran to the cockpit calling his name -- and there he was sitting peacefully in the cockpit. He'd decided to be a nice guy and let me sleep. Grrrrrr, I think that was the first time I was really angry with him. What a scare he gave me!!!

The good news is that adrenaline shot gave me my sea legs back.

In 30 minutes it was time for Eric’s watch. Conditions still bumpy.

This time on time, John woke me up at 4am -- my favorite watch. The sky is covered with stars, we have left the bad weather behind, and the half-moon is very brilliant. The horizon is studded with oil rigs -- at least 9 of them -- all brilliantly lit up.

These oil rigs are magnificent engineering feats, and at night they looked like extraterrestrial (here we go again) structures. Fully illuminated, they look like suspended cities held up high by gigantic columns. Beautiful!

The sun is almost up, the sea a bit calmer. Time for something to eat. I am starved.

Oil rig by day

Next Episode: And Then... Nothing Happened!

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