Sunday, April 01, 2007

Pine Island to Manatee Pocket, FL

36.5 nm
Wind: SE 10-15 knots
Seas: choppy
Maximum speed: 7.2 knots (because of wake)
Average speed: 3.9 knots
Latitude: 27°09.24’N
Longitude: 080°11.78’W

Another month gone. But not misspent, thankfully. It blows my mind that Karl turns thirty--thirty! That’s old!--next month, and that it’s our three-year anniversary before that. Three years with this man whom I love. Three years ago I was tromping along, happy, clueless, on the Appalachian Trail. Who would’ve guessed where I’d end up? It’s all a fairy tale with a happy ending.

We made it to St. Lucie today. It was a little bit of a rough day on the water. The ICW was choppier than usual, and the wind was right in our faces. The motoring is getting to me again. I sit and steer and agonize about using fossil fuels. Sometimes I really believe we should get rid of the diesel. We might die, sure, but at least we wouldn’t be contributing to global warming! And the boat would be blessedly quiet.

We don’t have a bimini cover (a kind of awning) or a spray dodger, so the sun is really hard on Karl. He took a break today and I manned the Master (our autopilot) for a couple of hours, in the sun and spray. The spray is worse, because after about a half-hour whoever’s steering is completely covered in crystallized salt. To the point where it hurts your face to touch it, because it’s like rubbing your skin with sandpaper. A shower would feel great.

The only reason the spray was so bad, though, was because we were going directly into the wind, something the boat is incapable of doing under sail. It’s the best feeling when you cut off the engine and start angling against the wind, feeling the bow of the boat slice through the water. What it boils down to is that a sailboat is designed to sail, wants to sail, begs to sail--when she’s powering, she’s inefficient at best. I can’t wait to be able to sail again.

The wakes today didn’t help either. Blasting through this section of ICW on the weekend was probably a bad idea, especially because we were waked about ten times an hour by million-dollar powerboats out for a weekend jaunt, spraying us with another shower of salt every time. But we’re here now.

Karl called his friend Paul and the computer’s in and we’re going over to his marina tomorrow. The anchorage here is pleasant but shallow, and we’ll probably head out for a burger tonight. We haven’t spent a cent in a week. So might as well splurge. I might even put on makeup!

No comments: