Day 5 Noon Position 23:32.149N 27:07.095W

Bill and Judy Stellin
Wed 5 Dec 2007 15:52
Gee, has it only been 5 days.  It seems like an eternity.
We made good progress yesterday, 187 miles, but through very heavy seas and high winds.
As is usual the winds were and still are square behind us, which means a poled out jib and main on the other side with a preventer.  Did I say preventer.  The blasted thing didn't do what it was supposed to do, which is, prevent an accidental jybe.  We had not only one, but three, all together at 3AM in the pitch dark.  I thought we were on a merry go round.  With the last one, the main sheet got around the steering pedestal and luckily only took out the pedestal guard.  That's the handle thing you grab on to in front of the wheel.  It could have been much much worse.  It's repairable and fortunately the grab bar didn't get taken overboard.  Also I shudder to think of what could have happened, like the boom break, the mast come down and people hurt with the boom flying from side to side with the force of tons.  On the west to east crossing Judy tried to be a preventer and had her arm broken in the process.
I mentioned yesterday how difficult it is to sail dead downwind.  Last night there was a subtle wind shift and the next thing chaos.  Today, we are just using a jib, poled out, no main.  Once bitten twice shy. If the seas would moderate we could go back to using both the main and jib.  As it is we are flying down the face of some really monster waves.  The weather forecast called for "some fifteen meter seas".  We've seen more than just "some". By Saturday, we should be back to normal trade wind conditions but that means two more days of this.
Both Judy and I are now hearing voices.  I kid you not.  Several times she has asked me if a radio was on.  Once she was sure she heard cannon fire, like over a firing range.  Not likely.
We had our first flying fish on board last night.  It was in the cockpit along with half of its scales.  I can't imagine where they all came from.  Judy is dipping a pail of water out now to wash them away.  I almost think a bird may have brought other fish on board and eaten them while we were not looking. Hey, if we are hearing non existent  voices, maybe the birds are just a figment of our imagination.