Sailmail has been frsutrating this season, and sometimes I just cant make a good connection, so when I do, these Posts get uploaded. Hence mondays one only went out Tuesday morning by which time I was beginning to think I was never going to get onto sailmail. IT might be that the best conditions for HF Radio in this region are right around dawn...so if this arrives Wednesday am. at confirms it.
So Monday I slowly recovered , only had mild nausea by the afternoon, and all day the wind stayed around 18 knots. I left the reef in the main and we sailed at 5.5 - 6.0 knots all day, as at intervals I ate more, beginning with instant tomato soup, later a tin of Watties (NZ) Spaghetti, cheese, nuts and bread, and later a tin of soup with "a quarter cup of vegetables in every can".
During the night some minor dramas with squalls coming through that required reductions in headsail most of which was out by late afternoon, and as usual the head-games begin as I wondered if the forecast had been sop wrong, what in fact was heading my way. I checked the Barometer now and again and if anything it was rising, but I didnt relax and sleep so well, and when I did I had strange dreams. This morning,Tuesday, when I finally got as good sailmail connection I downloaded a weather GRIB file and it predicted good wind for the next 3 days, 15 knots, going SE. I also listened in to "Rag of the Air" a radio net and heard other yachts reporting OK conditions on their way toi Vanuatu, so I felt reassure all would be good. A couple more little squalls passed nearby with some light rain this morning, but theyve all cleared away again.
Looking at our speeds, it was clear we would get to Tanna in the early evening wednesday and would have to heave to till morning, something I did at Rurutu, and at Futuna, and also off Suwarrow, and which I dislike, being near land in the dark, drifting toward a lee shore....so Ive reduced sail a little and am trying to go a little more slowly - speeding up was not going to get me there before dark - and so I am hopeful I can just keep sailing in, and arrive Thursday morning.. I believe the glow of the volcano can be visible at sea that will be something to look for wednesday night if it stays clear.
Meanwhile we are bumping along at 4 - 4.5 knots, the wind is around 15, and at noon Tuesday after a noon to noon run of 120 nautical miles there was 180 left. Position was 18.56S, 172.39East. The rigging and the mast are all good, theres hardly anythying leaking from the prop shaft, the solar cell has the Batterries "Full" and I am contemplating cooking pasta with a tin of tuna and some tomato and onion.
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