Just Sailing

Wednesday, August 11, 3:45PM PDT Position: 39-35N, 133-17W Speed: 7 kts, Course: 087 degrees magnetic
Today we just sailed. Sailed fast, too. This is on track to be our fastest day yet. perhaps 169 miles in 24 hours (from 8:00PM to 8:00PM). The wind has been a steady 16-20 kts from the north, and the seas about six feet from the north and northwest. We have reefed the main and genoa to balance the boat, and the ride has been fairly comfortable. There have been interludes of sunshine, but the day has been largely grey and cloudy with occasional drizzle. We should have another day of these conditions, then the wind is supposed to get much lighter and be swinging around to come from the west. The last day or two of our passage may be slow.
For much of the day we had two albatross circling the boat, and occasionally coming in for a water landing. When they want to set down, these large graceful flyers put their feet out as skis or brakes, and glide in for a pretty abrupt landing. They would float for a few minutes then take off for another circuit or two around VALIS.
We will sail through the 500-miles-to-go mark around 6:00PM this evening, and the crew is definitely thinkiing about home. Of course predicting the exact time of landfall is impossible, but a Sunday arrival seems like a distinct possibility. As we get closer our arrival will become much clearer.
Lunch today: Tuna. Dinner: Tuna. Breakfast tomorrow: NOT TUNA!
Paul / VALIS

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