Into the blue, out of the blue

Sun 16 Mar 2008 17:35
16 March Sunday
Noon position 06:29N 80:00W
Yesterday set out for the Galapagos Islands from San Jose: the most south westerly of the Las Perlas Islands. Very pleased I spent a day in these Islands with masses of marine life ( 5 foot leaping skates!), and deciduous trees on land with pink flowers just now, like cherry blossom.
Progress was very slow: Hardley a breath of wind, ghosting along at 1 - 2 kts, sails slatting noisily in the wavelets. Wished I had waited for a better forecast, but not forthcoming, and I want to get to Galapagos by the end of the month.
San Jose still in view at dusk. Then dark, ship under full sail, pasta just coming to the boil, hit by 30 kts of wind from astern! Struggled to get some sail in, unstowed stuff everywhere, then Fleck sorted and off like a greyhound into the night and the shipping lanes off Punta Mala (the big chunk of Panama that hangs down into the Pacific). Settled to 20 kts by midnight, and now a gentle 10 kts, but still enough for progress.
These good winds will not last, as these are trade winds spilling into the Pacific accross the Isthmus of Panama. My grib files show them hitting the ITCZ in about 100 miles: then it starts to get difficult.
Amazed to realise that I have been away for more than a month, I have forgotten Deb's birthday (not the first time) and Vicky's talk. Have also missed Hannah's school play. Hope all readers are well, thinking of you all from time to time!