June 20th, 2009

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Saturday Evening Post June 20, buttoning down the hatches for a gale

Saturday, June 20th, 2009

At 15.30 hrs I was at 33.17 N 72.17 W with 381 miles to go to Bermuda. It is now 17.00 hrs Eastern Summer Time and 23.00 hrs in Europe. Radio Nederland is signing on.

I just talked to Herb Hilgenberg, the weather guru. I’m in for some strong winds between here an Bermuda. I have slowed the boat down, just with the little storm jib. Tuesday/Wednesday 35/40 knot gale force southerlies are predicted for the Bermuda area. It was a fabulous sailing day to-day. The wind was most of the day from the West, about 10/15 knots. I had the new (used) Gaastra 140% Genoa sail poled out and wing on wing with the reefed main. Doing 6 plus knots. To-night the winds are supposed to increase to 20/25 knots. I am ready for it. I tried the fish line but it became all fouled up with the Saragossa seaweeds. So, it’s a can of tuna with noodles, stir fry vegetables, for dinner. Last night, I had 5 or 6 pilot whales (Potvis? in Dutch) keep me company for about 5 minutes. I first thought that this would be the usual dolphin/porpoise entertainment. But these guys were about twice the size and not prepared to frolic like the dolphins. They are all black with a large blow hole in the square heads. Never experienced this before. I have seen individual pilot whales from a distance but not a group swim up along side. I got just one picture, they were gone so fast.