Mapping the Limits of the Soul 7: Getting Closer to the Middle of Nowhere!
We drove all night, probably at about 6 knots. This is the slowest ship I have been on, and I have discovered that when the ship moves slower than the swells under her it makes for some bucking action!!
We have been in the middle of a confused cross and hind swell for the last couple of days, with quartering seemingly not doing the trick to smooth our passage over the waves. ie, she heaves. Luckily, so far, I have not!
Today we rinsed all of our gear in bleach so we can use it in the remote Monuments we are about to encounter without fear of bringing in any exotic organisms (except ourselves, I guess) to these remote and pristine systems. I is getting excited!!
We did an abandon ship drill in the rain (sweet, warm, tropical ocean sea squall rain!), putting our gumby suits on, mustering like we knew what we were doing etc. I am to join the life raft of the executive officer if the Hi’ialakai goes under, which gives me much faith!!
Tonight while I was walking the deck, looking for stars in the cloudy sky, when I realised that if I fell overboard, no one would ever find me in time. On the last cruise I was on, falling overboard would mean a deep sleep within a minute in the Arctic waters, followed by never waking up. Here, it would take hours or maybe even days, floating, floating, floating. I guess you would have company before too long!!
Which all stemmed from the fact that during the drill, we all had to try to memorise the location of the nearest land that we were shooting for in our little life rafts if the ship sinks. We were 170 nautical miles from the nearest land, Oahu, which we sailed from 48 hours prior!! 170 nautical miles (a nautical mile is just over 1 terrestrial mile) from land makes this 8 times further from land than I have ever been; even the Bering Sea is only ~50 miles wide! This is wildly remote, and about to get remoter!!
ie This goes on and on and on:
I LOVE that bee’s attitude!! Always perky, always excited, always hungry for the next day of adventure and life, sweet life that is for the living!!
The Pacific is not always calm!! But it is always lovely, and always my home!
Today I also took a few minutes to play the mandolin! I have become proficient at the beginning of the C and D major pentatonic scales!! Tomorrow, I shall practice them some more, and maybe start trying to read sheet music! Practice your instruments people, Family Jam Band is going live in April!!
Life is so short, and there is so much I want to do and see and learn! Knowledge is a thirst that becomes worse with slaking!
Arrrrrgggghhhh, read up me hearties!