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Thursday, March 2, 2017

Record Time

Last night, the Northeast Providence Channel was a confused piece of water. On top of that, we had more traffic than usual: 5 or 6 cruiseliners and several cargo ships. I was off watch when I heard Myron speaking to a captain on another boat. I came up to see if I could help. It was another sailboat. A single hander coming up from Jost Van Dyke who wanted to round the corner of Eleuthera Island and get a nap near Egg Island. I spied his red port light, coming toward our green starboard light. We stayed in communication (he could receive AIS but not send), and depended upon our radar and his call of CPA (closest point of approach). Finally I began to see his green starboard light and we knew we would soon be passing starboard to starboard, at about 1/3 of a mile on a very dark night. When I heard his boat name, 'Moxie,' my mind immediately brought up a snapshot of a blue hulled sloop. Absent from that recall was where I had seen it. Myron asked if he was indeed a blue hulled boat and the guy perked up and said 'why yes!' We must have seen him in Georgetown or Long Island years ago. We wished him well and a good rest. The only traffic that required us to divert was a Carnival Cruise Line called 'Victory.' We ended up a mile east of our track. All other ships worked around us. AIS is nice to have.

I only saw one shooting star, and it was quite brilliant. Sometimes I wonder if it is not simply space junk falling out of the sky.

The redeeming factor of such a rough ride was the pace at which we were traveling. We left Current Cut at 11:45 pm and were on the mooring in Man O Way Cay less than 12 hours later. That includes traveling at reduced power when we made water once inside the cut. For the first half of the trip, our speed was over 7 knots. Around 5 am, we lost the bulk of our wind and our speed was under 7 but stayed above 6, our speed benefiting from being tossed northward by the seas. The Little Harbor Cut was doable, confirmed by three boats that had just come out. We got a nice surf in on one wave.

We arrived two hours earlier than planned and Barry just happened to be out near the mooring. We got a greeting from him, squared away the sails, showered, ate then slept for more than 5 hours. There are no plans for the remainder of the day except another meal and more sleep. Myron is already looking at weather windows for a Gulf Stream crossing. I am hoping for flat seas!

Love to all,

{GMST}26°35.42'N|077°00.11'W|6:08 PM|{GEND}

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