A Cockroach!

Where Next?
Bob Williams
Wed 15 Jun 2011 02:13

Noon Position: 26 50.0 S 164 04.0 E
South west, Speed: 5 knots
North, F4 moderate breeze
Overcast, drizzle, mild
Day's run: 135 miles

Last night I was fossicking around to see whether I had stowed some coffee in some obscure overlooked nook when a shadow darted across my peripheral vision. What was that? Was it my imagination, a trick of light, or was it, was it … no, it is too horrendous to consider, was it a COCKROACH? I poked around some more with a can of bug spray at the ready and initially felt relieved not to find anything. But to be sure I pulled everything out of the cupboard and there was the ugly black creature hiding in a corner, straight out of Kafka. I sprayed him and he ran away. There is bound to be more. So here begins the cockroach wars. This is what happens when visiting the tropics. The last time I had a cockroach infestation was back in 2002 while crossing the Indian Ocean and I found the most effective way of getting rid of them was cold weather, and especially cold water, which is why I probably have not had a cockroach problem for a long time, as I have regularly been in cold regions. People will no doubt be giving me all kinds of advice on how to avoid them and how to get rid of them, and sort of look down their noses in an understanding superior sort of way. “Oh no, we've never had cockroaches on our boat.” Oh how shameful it is to have a cockroach on board.

On to more immediate concerns. It looks like a low pressure system is heading our way. I was hoping it might pass to the north of us and I have biased our track to the south in the hope of helping it to do so. That way we would obtain favourable winds as it went past, but no such luck. If we were an Open 60 maybe we could do it, sling shot round its south eastern corner, but old Sylph is not quite fast enough for such capers. It is going to pass well to the south of us which means headwinds. I am continuing to bias our track south for now, with the object of perhaps getting a slightly more favourable slant once the low has passed. But this will not be for a while, so I expect that probably by later tonight we will be punching into it, and no doubt we can expect a front to hammer us for a bit. Such are the joys of the sailing life.

All is well.