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Day 6

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Location: Ft. Pierce, Florida

Log: 2959

Distance Traveled Yesterday (and all night): 164 Nautical Miles

Total Trip Distance: 320 Nautical Miles

The last time I was in Harbortown Marina was as crew for the new owners of Suladan in March of 2006, almost two years ago. I can still recall the excellent Italian dinner prepared on board. This time, I’m in a considerably smaller slip, and there is no outstanding chef aboard.

We had planned on leaving St. Augustine Thursday late afternoon, but weather and some needed parts for Snowhawk delayed us until yesterday (Friday) morning. We got away in time for the 8:30 am bridge opening and arrived here at 7 am this morning, tired but happy to have completed such a long leg non-stop. On our departure and for most of the day Friday, we had following seas leading to an uncomfortable ride. Bryan was at the helm for the morning and was not his usual enthusiastic self. I first attributed it to drowsiness caused by the Bonine seasickness pill he took, but I soon learned that he was suffering from Mal de Mer. He soldiered on and took all of his shifts, but I know it was a miserable day for him.

We had planned on staying close to Snowhawk for the long offshore night, but they were sailing and later motoring in unfavorable winds and only making about six knots. I couldn’t slow down to that speed without making Bryan far more uncomfortable because our stabilizers have very little effect until a speed of over seven knots. Regretfully, we left Snowhawk behind. They are due to arrive here shortly, about three hours behind us.

During the night, the seas moved around to moving from the east, and eventually from the south. We had a good ride overnight and Bryan got in some good sleep. He’s back to himself this morning and is outside washing the boat off as I write. He’s planning on renting a car and heading back to the Ford Plantation later today. I’ll move on to West Palm Beach tomorrow where John Fortenberry and his wife Judy will join me for the crossing to the Bahamas. It’s looking like we might have decent weather to cross on Tuesday.

Bryan Duck has proven to be a fine deckhand (when he wasn’t hanging his head over the side) and outstanding company. He’s welcome back aboard Steel Magnolia any time, particularly when the seas are more calm. 

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