Saturday, November 13, 2010

South Atlantic: Day 2

A day of illness and uncertainty by some crew member. A few have questioned the decision to climb aboard the Sea Dragon.  As we pass an ocean field of oil rigs, one imagined a way to get to a rig, climb aboard, request a helicopter, fly to back to Brazil and catch a flight home.  Can't blame them, we started our day with a torn mainsail, the water pump on a constant fritz, an hour of promising sun devoured by saturated clouds that let loose. But the biggest blow came when the captain reported a virus in our main computer-injected from a memory stick knocking out our weather and communications systems.   Our stomachs tightened.  Thirty knot winds punched our sails with random blows above while 12' waves threw upper cuts - a KO for Mike who has been suffering the worst seasickness.  Perhaps I'm the sick one, but I am still enjoying the adventure.  Confident we have the right people on board to keep the boat afloat while we contend with the conditions when we start doing our trawling.

I spied a palm-sized, songbird displaced on our deck.  It look up at me timid and confused wanting to go home as well. Last we saw of it, it took to the sea attempting to ride the gusts that ride the waves.  It flapped in a panicked state as a 10' wave came directly for it.  It disappeared behind the wave - surely it had been steamrolled, but no.  It rose above the wave just as it curled and we all cheered.

I tried to imagine its journey traveling 220 miles without food or water.  I had hoped it would stay as some sort of boat bird - safe from the wind and rain.  But realized even if it did make the journey to S. Africa, it would be the only one of its kind there, devoured in minutes.

At best, it could make it to the oil rigs, rest awhile before making the last 100+ miles. What are its chances? What were the chances of me, a 51 year-old woman from landlocked Elmira, NY crossing the S. Atlantic?

More later,

Sea Dragon Ship's Blog
5 Gyres blog

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