A busy night filled with squalls

Herodotus recounts that the ancient Greek Amasis advised his friend Polycrates thus: “I know the Gods are jealous. For I cannot remember that I have ever heard of any man, who having been constantly successful, did not at last utterly perish.”

I had an awakeful night. Every hour or so, a squall would come through and I would go out, reef the sails, and then unfurl them in some short period. Finally I got to sleep at 5AM, and awoke at 10AM to a lovely day with a strong north-westerly, but relatively flat seas.

I finally achieved a breakthrough with my celestial navigation. I had found that I’ve been unable to get any more accurate than about 5/60ths of a degree, which translates to 5 nautical miles of latitude on the map. It was rather frustrating to say the least.

I now know that sextants have backlash error on the micrometer adjuster. This can be accounted for by ensuring that when you zero the instrument and take a sight, you consistantly arrive at the measurement by always making the final turn of the adjustment knob in the same direction, by convention from a higher angle. By chance, my habit was to turn one way for zeroing, and the other way for sight taking.

Today my noon sight gave me a latitude within half a mile of my GPS latitude!!!

I have all my music via a google music subscription, and today it all stopped working. It turns out if you haven’t signed for a certain period, it blocks your downloaded music in case your subscription is no longer valid. My phone now thinks that it is early May, and my music works again. I celebrated with a Bee Gees anthology.

The squalls returned a little in the afternoon with the ubiquitous accompaining rain, but a little more gentle than overnight.

It’s rather hot and skin is easily dried. So my new working uniform starkly constrasts with the wet weather clad gear of the southern ocean!

With the excitement of the squalls and the strong breeze abeam in the morning, I annihilated my daily run record:

151 miles in 24 hours!

Sir Francis Chichester advises to never brag about your distances sailed, or Neptune will get jealous and pay you back.

Naturally I scoff at such silly superstition.

My dinner of the last two weeks has been alternatively cous cous and pasta, fortified with pasta sauce and either tinned chicken or tuna.

It’s quite tasty and, as it’s techinically four different meals, I’m not sick of it yet. However, I decided to celebrate my record with a tasty Thai creamy curried chicken and cous cous.

I broke with my usual routine of eating directly out of the cooking containers and artistically dumped it into a bowl. I sat down like a celebrated epicurian to enjoy a fine dish accompanied with the proud mind of a record breaker.

Before I took my first mouthful, a wave came out of the blue, tilted my boat to a sufficient degree, and my fine dish migrated out of the bowl onto the cabin floor.

The scooped-up contents mostly tasted like Thai creamy chilli chicken and barely tasted like oily bilge sludge, which is better than the other way around.

Latitude: -20.965, Longitude: -134.006, Time: 05:16:20 26-05-2018 UTC