|Next destination: Noumea, New Caledonia|
|A meeting of ships in the middle of the night! It |
suddenly became a small, small world out there!
The winds should be good, but strong. That will make for more sailing and less motoring. However, the seas will be rough with the swells from the fronts that have just come through. I have my patch and pill ready and hope they work. I never know when mal de mare is going to hit me. It usually comes in rough seas and when I lose sight of the horizon at night. But not always. The Pacific Ocean has been kinder to me than the Atlantic.
|Coming into Havannah Passage with the flow.|
We left the harbor at 0600 and were on our way south-southwest. Of course, the wind had shifted following the fronts. The wind was right on the nose! The ride was doomed to be uncomfortable - but fast with the winds in the twenties. We were flying along between 7-9 knots SOG (Speed Over Ground) and making good time.Timing is very important on this passage. Actually, estimated arrival time (ETA) at the next anchorage or port is always important as you want the correct light and tidal flow. This trip has an extra challenge: there is a 40 mile passage around the southern end of New Caledonia through the Havannah Passage and a series of reefs.
This should only be done in daylight and when the tide is flowing into the lagoon. Our goal is to be at the eastern entrance to the passage early in the morning of our third day at sea. Hopefully the winds and waves will be amenable to that! Every yacht has to make their own calculations depending on the speed at which they sail or motor, so we often leave at different times while still arriving somewhat together. This time we will be traveling with new people we have met in Port Villa, but they are catamarans to they will blow right by us at some point!
|All tucked in at the dock in Port Moselle Marina. Whew!|
During my watch between 2000 and 2400 on the first overnight passage, I saw a big bright ball of light coming at me and another big light coming after me. I was seasick and thought I was delusional. However, it was two passenger cruise ships switching ports, more or less and I was in their shipping lane, I guess. So I called up one on the VHF and made sure they could see me. It is not often that you have a gathering out there in the middle of no where in the middle of the night! At least it livened up the night! We were not in any real danger. It was just startling to see a light coming from both ends of the tunnel! And it distracted me from hanging over the rail!
NOTE: Dennis does not participate in mal de mare - it is my curse! In fact, he was so healthy that he spent most of the trip trying to repair both heads! I don't know how he does it!
|Next stop: Baguettes, Croissants and Latte at the market|
I am glad to be here! Hopefully, my stomach will settle down so I can enjoy the local cuisine. Now for some baguettes and croissants!