| 4:45 PM local time, Saturday, Oct. 6th (0646 Oct. 6th UTC) 10 35 S 134
25 E. Temp. 84, Humidity 80%, Cloud Cover 98%.
Ever since we arrived at Hiva Oa, the crew of Maverick has been
getting grief from other cruisers about our fishing, or rather, about
our not fishing. Rich Oba, our neighbor in the harbor back home in
Richmond, and Mr. Shrode's father, Allen, had given us advice and a lot
of gear, but on the passage to the Marquesas we lost the two deep sea
lures they gave us and we just kind of let it go after that.
But in Port Moresby, the shock and amazement of Paul and Francis
of Okiva that we weren't fishing, together with their absolute
insistence, shamed us into giving it another go. Paul lent us a very
nice Penn deep-sea reel, another lure, some fresh advice and not a
little admonishment. We would not be able to face him again if we didn't
give it a go.
Two days ago, Ship's Angler Terry Shrode pulled in the first fish,
a bonito, of our voyage. We hauled it aboard with Rich Oba's net and Mr.
Shrode walloped it with a winch handle. The Captain was not entirely
comfortable viewing the maniacal glee with which Mr. Shrode decapitated
and gutted the fish, to be honest. When there are only two aboard and
one takes a fiendish delight in murder, well, there's enough cause for
concern. The foredeck ran with gore and blood. Soon, however, the
carnage was forgotten, the fish sautéed with butter and garlic, and the
canned dinner Mr. Shrode had just prepared, forgotten with it. Now Mr.
Shrode is of course the king of the sea and nothing but fishing holds
any interest for him whatsoever, so the Captain has been forced into
doing odd jobs like figuring out which direction the boat is going. It's
not as easy as it looks.
ADDENDA AND ERRATA
1. The Royal Papua Yacht Club has 100 paid employees, not 30.
2. When Spinks went overboard in the race and the kite flew into the
sky, it was blowing 40, according to a nearby boat with an anemometer,
3. Not too long ago I spoke about flying the drifter on a pole to
windward, genoa to leeward, and the full main in light air. I just read
an article where Ted Turner talked about the same basic idea but in
heavy air, and for the same reason, really. In light air the problem is
that we don't carry a symmetrical spinnaker and sailing 140-150 degrees
off the wind is difficult because the genoa collapses. Even if you had a
spinnaker, it would be difficult for the vane to drive the boat, but
with the other arrangement it can handle it easily because the boat
balances itself better. Turner used it, with heavier sails, when it was
blowing so hard that handling the spinnaker was too squirrelly and the
other combination gave him as much power and was more forgiving.
PS to Dave Tolmie: Jeesh. You sail all the way to Australia and who
finds you? Dave Tolmie. I guess that's some of the bad news about email.
The good news is, we can't quite hear you from here. But seriously,
folks, welcome aboard.
PS to Hank: Funny how the topic of penis sheathes brings out the poet in
some people. I found your promotion of the penis sheath at the expense
of the codpiece quite uplifting. "The penis sheath protects the weapon
like the sheath enfolding Saladdin's sword. It makes a smooth and facile
covering when immediate action is called for," indeed. I beg your
forgiveness in mentioning this, but should a gentleman of your mature
years still be taking "immediate action?" I call to your attention that
old chestnut by Otis Redding, "Try a Little Tenderness."
PS to Pastor Bob: Thanks for not excommunicating me, and no, I had no
part in the making of Mrs. Riedel's respectability and decency, you can
be sure of that.
PS to Peter Haapaniemi: Thanks for the thoughts from the Great Midwest.
PS to Peter Siegel: Nasty and brutish, OK. Just don't call me short.
PS to Steve Fishell: Thanks for the words of encouragement. Don't retire
PS to Doug, Dennis, Blackie, Norton, GV, Mack, Sally, and everyone else
who has sent their words of encouragement or belittlement: Thanks for
all your thoughts. They speed Maverick on its way