24 June 2022

Day 20– Motoring

This morning the wind finally dwindled away to nothing and we dutifully checked our fuel level, performed standard engine checks, and started the engine. It will be 24 hours of engine rumble until we find the northerly winds on the other side of the high. It's a long time to motor.

I find myself wondering about the decisions I made about our route early on. Our friends aboard Kalyra, who left from New York the same day we left from Cape Henlopen stayed north of the Gulf Stream when we turned south. I think we had better weather than they did — our goal in heading south. It was certainly warmer, and we had fewer nasty days, but staying the course and not spending two days going south have put them two days ahead of us. Worth it?

Then I think back on that day our main halyard jammed at the top of the mast, and I had to climb the mast — surely the most dangerous thing I ever did in my life. No joke. It was a pure miracle that the conditions that day were quiet enough to make the climb feasible. If we hadn't turned south and found calmer weather, what then? What if I wasn't able to climb the mast, and the main sail stayed up?

So, we were lucky, and every sane sailor knows the value of luck.

Add to that Helena's happiness about the warm sunny weather we found on our southern route, and the deep sea of her tan, and I think I did all right. It's not a race, after all.

Anyway, that's what comes of having a lot of time to sit and think while the engine drones on and on.

We saw some small dolphins with white stripes on their sides today. The water was so clear we could see them zooming through the water 20 feet down. Amazing! I wonder what they eat? We haven't seen a single fish swimming near the boat, and now that I see that the visibility is clear enough to see them easily, the mystery deepens. Where are all the fish? It's a mystery.

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