Kissing the coral, again

Tue 27 Nov 2007 00:47
Position 09:16.3N 78:07.5W
An interesting day dodging up the coast behind, for the most part a long coral reef. Lots of small islands topped with half a dozen coconut palms, and many picturesque Kuna Villages. A tremendous swell, and no wind, makes travel uncomfortable, and I have to use the engine all the time. The swell comes from the north east where the trade winds are gathering force. Huge breaking waves on the outer reefs would be welcomed on Fistral beach, Cornwall: an awesome sight for us sailors however. Hit another patch of coral at midday, the result of the autopilot yawing off the intended course by 100 yards: the safe channels are very narrow, and the water very murky. I don't think there will have been much additional damage. Hitting coral is like cutting a common bile duct in surgery: nearly everyone has done it, there is allways an excuse, but it shouldn't happen, and there are some gifted sailors who can truthfully say that they have never had a scrape. The majority lie through their teeth, but I have allways found that confession is good for the soul, or whatever.
Tonight there has been more heavy rain, my water tanks are nearly full thanks to my cunning collecting system, and I have a quiet anchorage close to the mainland, and mangroves, so all the screens are up to try to reduce the insect assault.
Have just finished Will Self's Book of Dave: his London book. Interesting to compare with Martin Amis's London book: London fields, which I read last year.Both these guys are a bit too clever for their own good, if you ask me, and I'm sure they won't. But I must admit that especially the Book of Dave was excellent: I can even understand Cockney now, although Spannish would be a lot more useful out here.