Day 10 and we are finally rounding the corner at cape st Vincent on the north western side of the island. From there it is a straight shot all the way to Nosy be and crater bay where we will be mooring the trusty old catamaran.
The night shift was a very busy one with the heavy following winds (from behind) causing us to surf the big swell that was coming through from the same direction as the wind. This was causing the autopilot to get heavily confused, and i would have to intervene and manually helm (steer) or bad things were bound to happen.
If the computers ever try take over the world.. we just need to head out to sea. A lil wind and a slight swell is evidently enough to discombobulate a machine that can beat a chess grand master at his own game.
It appears that i have discovered AIs kryptonite.
When my obstinate pc at home acts up again, as it is very prone to doing.. im gonna threaten it with a desk fan.
To be fair though.. this wind has me a lil frazzled too. I just made myself my delicious morning sandwich and took it up to the helm station. Before i even had a chance to take one bite, it had rent my one sandwich half asunder.
As i was trying to reassemble my stack it would blow yet another vital ingredient this way and that.
Luckily i steadfastly observe the 5 minute rule or i would still be pretty hungry now. As it was i landed up wearing half of that sandwich.
The wind even had the audacity to blow a piece of tomato out of my expectant maw. I had the thing right in my mouth.. ready to crunch down and masticate the hell out of it.. when the venturi effect caused by my open oral orifice, sped up the passing wind and sucked the tomato right out of my sandwich, my mouth.. and my life.
I will miss that tomato.. but the crabs can add it to the bread corner ill lob out for them just now.. if it doesnt blow all the way to Kansas.
We are on a bee line to our first destination now though.. so there is light at the end of this very windy tunnel, and as soon as we get past the cape we should have a slightly smoother ride.
At the moment we are bouncing around like a ping pong ball in a flushing toilet… its like having been on a manic roller coaster for 10 days straight.
There is no respite.. no area you can walk to on the boat that is nice and stable, so you can take a small break from the epileptic sailing vessel.
And to add to the discomfort, every time the boat slams down at the bow (the front) a big plume of spray jumps out of the water.. and the wind delivers the soggy, salty splash directly to my unimpressed face.
We call this getting douched.. and today i am getting douched more than a busy hookers vagina back in the 1930s. (Editors note: WTF Sean!!)
But it will very soon be worth it. In the next hour or 2 i should be able to catch a glimpse of the island of Madagascar.
As soon as i see it im gonna scream.. LAND AHOY… cause its the right thing to do!.
But i have not slept in 2 days now.. and with the shifts intensifying due to the extra care we need to pay to the weather, the sails, and the dizzy autopilot.. it has all left me pretty bushed.
I am staring intently at the horizon waiting to spot the old chunk of Gondwanaland, and every now and then i think ive glimpsed it. It must be my tired noggin playing tricks on me though.. cause every other minute i look.. and its gone again.
Ive heard of mirages on land where you see water.. but not of mirages on water where you see land.. but believe me.. they do exist. But soon soon ill be able to shout ‘land ahoy’ with some modicum of certainty as we steadily approach.
We dont have a crows nest unfortunately, but we do have what closely resembles a birds nest, with the heaps of lines lying all around the helm station. I have tidied them up a 100 times already… and if i do it one more time, only to have to wank them out (unravel) again, im gonna maybe hang myself from the boom with one of em. Then ill be like the dude from INXS… who also died of an asphyxiwank. (Editors not: really Sean??)
I need some sleep in a hurry. Lol. As you can probably tell just by reading this post.
The anticipation of actually spotting my mid ocean oasis is mounting though.. I cannot wait to meet some of the islands unique inhabitants.
We are after all distantly related, from that time aeons ago when Madagascar broke off of Africa, like a piece of a jigsaw puzzle you spend months on.. that your dog knocks under the couch.
Im very keen on a joyful reunion with my ancient cousins.. and hopefully there are some creatures there that are just as keen to meet me.
I just encountered one of em now.. and they are certainly a bit different. A Madagascan native just flew past the boat… but in reverse. This silly looking bird was trying to beat his way into the wind.. but the wind was having none of it.. so the bird was flying steadily backwards.. and he didnt seem too phased about it. Definitely cant have been a female bird. (Editors note: Sean.. this is sexist and untrue!) (My reply: bollocks!)
I hope all the creatures here are equally bizarre. Then ill feel right at home.
As Obelix would have said in this instance.. ‘These Romans are crazy!’ Toc toc.
Thanks sir David Attenborough for getting me interested in,, and taking me on all those televised tours of this fantasy land when i was a kid… but i think ill take it from here mate.
I suspect ill be privy to a coupla views of this place that would never be shown on TV, and if i know my luck.. there will definitely be adventure ahead