This morning my watch began with coffee for one and oatmeal for two. After a long overnight watch and a hot breakfast Charles headed below at 6:30 am, leaving the dog and me in charge for the foreseeable future.
We haven’t done typical 2-4 hour watches. Charles likes sailing at night so when we need to push through he sails in the darkened hours and I wake up early to relieve him when the sun is up. He takes advantage of night winds and raises the sails under the stars with the diesel off, and only the sounds of the wind in the sails and the water rushing by. Keep in mind that our preferred day and night watches don’t take place through ocean storms, usually just a calm mid-Atlantic river and the occasional Chesapeake Bay.
This morning’s watch finds Sylvie and me enjoying an overcast sunrise, a calm river and a bit of alone time before the rain starts. It’s all fun and games until you have to figure out how to keep yourself warm and dry and captain the boat properly while not waking up your husband, while concurrently looking like you and the dog are both enjoying the sail and know what you’re doing. The rain hasn’t started yet but I’m going to master all of those things before the end of my watch.
Fast forward a bit, gentle readers. Master all of those things during my solo sunrise watch, I did. I stopped counting our consecutive hours at sea once we’d hit 24, all at a steady 6 knots.
Fast forward again to the afternoon, no rain yet. The day is hot and I’ve progressed from fleece to long sleeves to sweating off white rivulets of sunblock under a large umbrella in a tank top.
We’re a few hours from our home port under rainclouds, trying to beat a severe thunderstorm the land weather reports are hyping up as the damper to your Friday night summer plans.
Our home marina has resort amenities and attracts locals and tourists on dates and vacations, and toting cameras, strollers and shopping bags. After every sail, coming home in-season to crowds of people, lights and noise is jarring and unnerving after spending so many days quietly on the water with only the sounds of the rushing of the wind in the sails.
“And when the day arrives I’ll become the sky and I’ll become the sea and the sea will come to kiss me for I am going home. Nothing can stop me now.” -Reznor