After rising to our great challenge, the sea rewarded us with smooth sailing through the afternoon until the wind dropped off entirely and we motored on into the calmest, starriest night I could ever remember in this wind-worn belt of the Pacific.
Rotating on 3-hour watches, I relieved Crystal just after 3 am. Swell plowed on into the moonless galaxy of twinkling starlight and bubbling phosphorescence. I felt Barry there with me…He surely wouldn’t have missed out on a night so spectacular…Oh the shooting stars!
At 5:02 am, Venus, the morning star, rose out of the sea. Light followed her. I woke Crystal, but couldn’t resist watching the sunrise before I laid down to rest. We turned off the motor and let Swell drift in the succulent silence. We curled up against the wad of broken sail, tucked under our blankets, and dissolved into the Peace…the ubiquitous, all-encompassing Peace…that was floating on that miraculously calm, open sea…
As we entered the deep, easy entrance to the next atoll destination a few hours later, our timing appeared flawless. The sea surface began to wrinkle as the trades gusted from the east, and the swell was most certainly filling in! We watched it move north along the atoll’s coral rim where it peeled off along the shallows of a long, flat lay of reef…thus, Crystal’s last 36 hours became a salty blur.
We wondered where and when we’d meet again as she stepped up into the tiny prop plane, leaving me with more waves than I knew what to do with! Thanks to Patagonia again and GoPro Cameras for providing the gear to document our adventures!!