November 12, 2011

Closing with Australia

Connect 4 in 20 knots
We should be able to shout 'land ho' sometime later this evening or early tomorrow. Although, as the wind dies (and we throw every sail we have at the problem), our eta has shifted from 8 pm, to 10 pm, to midnight, to 3 am... No matter--once we are in we still have to wait our turn for clearance and with some eight boats due to arrive tomorrow, who knows when we'll officially be in Oz.
We're still in visual range of three of the four boats we left Chesterfield with--a fact that has made Evan gleeful, given they are all monohulls in the 50+' range. Connect 4 has dropped to about 60 miles behind us and turned on their motor in the wee hours. We're still making over 5 knots so won't be adding our motor for a while.
We're in a strange limbo today. When the sailing was hard and fast, and we needed to concentrate on staying upright and not getting hurtled across the cabin, Australia still seemed far away. But today, as we ghost along in flat seas, and we can calculate that we have less than 100 miles to go of our 7500 mile, seven month, six country journey it feels like we're ready to be done.

Discovery and Karynia I in the home stretch
 Maia is struggling to concentrate on school and is dancing around, while Evan is doing a final cleaning and sorting for quarantine. I'm trying to decide what final dishes to cook, and what food we should simply sacrifice. None of us really wants to nap. Kirk from Discovery calls over every hour or so to find out what sail tweaking we are doing to keep our speed up--so I think the last-day jitters are going around.
I've tried to figure out why this landfall is so different than the others. For our friends, who are returning home or ending their cruises, the significance is clear. But for us it's simply another stop over. But I guess it's also the point where we can say we've sailed across the Pacific Ocean. It's like we've graduated or something. Similar to the way arriving in Mexico marked the voyage south.
Today our Ipod is set to a playlist of sailing songs. And despite the beauty of the sail our eyes are glued to the horizon.
"Land ho, I need some wind to make this dream complete."
S 23 50
E 153 38
86 to Bundie
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1 comment:

Lynda Halliger-Otvos said...

Wow-you are so close to land, right on !~!!~ May your quarantine go smoothly and your stay be all you hope for with a bit more excitement thrown in for memory-making.