A page is turned

What a tango that was! Dancing with Marie was very much, take a step down, she takes a step up. Take a step left, she goes with you. Ultimately we saw almost nothing of her except fine rain, increased trade winds, and good swell to surf on. She sent us off into the next episode of this “going nowhere” voyage. The air is warmer here, the wind lighter. For now I’m just pushing on the same tack, with the big spinnaker, and the AP in charge.

No cat in the bag

For you animal lovers like me I do not mean this literally of course. I just want to remind myself that, 7 days into a 6 months voyage, the beginning is an important phase, but a drop in the bucket of what’s facing us. The hardest parts are still ahead, way ahead in fact. There’s the squalls, the doldrums, negotiating Torres Strait, Cape Agulhas and his boat breaking waves, Cape Horn whose reputation need not be repeated, and let’s not forget the very long return home! So, relax, sit back, fasten your harness, and stick with it! I am so excited at the opportunity to learn so many things at once.

Auto-pilot (AP)

There is magic in the air when the autopilot settings and the sail trim work just hand in hand. So far I’ve only experienced it once. Everything is smooth, and we’re fast, that’s when I know I’ve got it. Even accelerating in the surf everything stays stable. I’m learning. That’s the best I can do. I must admit though that having an autopilot on board is quite essential.

Who’s talking?

A few days ago I started hearing a conversation. The same thing happened during the race to Hawaii at the beginning. I noticed it, realized that the brain was trying to interpret some background noise, focused my hearing on that particular sound and forgot about it: it didn’t come back. I did the same thing here and I don’t hear voices anymore. Except for the monkey on my back. Some years ago that monkey was more like a gorilla. But today he’s just a tiny chimpanzee. Kinda cute in his ways. It’s fun to have him keep an eye out for me.

An attitude of gratitude/h2> The single most important addition I did to Changabang was to install an electricity generation system. I had choices to make, but an opportunity showed up and it defined what happened thereafter. Thank you to Dave H. for selling me his Watt & Sea Cruising 300 hydrogenerator and two solar panels at a good price. His generosity set me up on the path to set up Changabang with hydrogenerators. Thanks to Rob T as well for putting me in touch with Bruce Schwab of Ocean Planet Energy, Chris Lang of Bainbridge International, respectively seller and importer of Watt & Sea in the US. Chris managed to offer a demo system, which allowed me to have two systems. In shipping one got damaged, and with the insurance claim and additional dollars we bought a new one and repaired the old one. There is more to this story so I wanted to extend my gratitude to Bruce, Chris, and the team at Watt & Sea. Now it’s all fine and dandy to have the hardware, one needs to install it on the boat. And on Changabang it was not easy. Thankfully my buddy Noël, who owns a precision metal machining company, assisted with the design and the build of a couple brackets that were then mounted on the stern of Changabang. So a big thank you to Noël as well: these were two nice pieces of aluminum craft!

Author: Skipper

Wannabe circumnavigator. http://pjsails.com/a-skipper-looking-for-adventure/

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