A Beautiful Day!

Dubbel Zout at Sea
Nik Ormseth
Fri 20 Jan 2023 21:21
What a gorgeous day!  Scattered clouds, smaller swells.   Lighter winds, too (more about that later), so we flew the spinnaker from noon til sunset, turning what would have been a light-wind, low-miles day into a solid average around 6 knots.  We saw flying fish at several points in the day, and of course another beautiful sunset (again with dolphins).

We’re eating well — basically it’s a race at the moment to eat perishables before they spoil.  Supplies are mostly in good shape, though we’ve discovered shortcomings in our storage technique for fruits & vegetables.  The biggest culprits have been the sweet potatoes (which in the Canary Islands are more the size of small pumpkins).  It turns out that, even if you put the sweet potato in the bottom of the produce hammock and the smaller items — say, the avocados — on top, over the course of the night, the sweet potato will climb on top.  The result, as Rowan discovered this morning at first light, was basically guacamole strewn across the aft part of the cockpit. ;-p

For dinner this evening I cooked Pad Thai (or at least that’s what we called it).  Cooking while underway is a constant flirtation with disaster.  Even today, when the boat’s rocking was relatively modest, there’s just no surface you can trust to stay level.  Non-slip mats help a lot, but you still have to account for the roll in your own motions.  The only thing that does stay (more or less) level is the gimbaled stove.  Which is great, but when you see the stove 40 degrees out of level with the counter it’s next to, it’s still disconcerting (especially when you’ve got two pans going on it)!

The weather forecasts for next week are showing lighter winds and a hole developing to the northwest that we hope to avoid, so our day of solid mileage under the spinnaker today was really encouraging.  We’re quite close to the Cape Verdes this evening.  Our hope is that if we can average six knots for the coming few days, the southerly route will allow us to get around the lull.  And if not, we’ll just figure out how to make the best of a calm day in the middle of the ocean!