Sunday, July 20, 2014

Rain, Rain Go Away

The last week has been a big one!  In case you haven't heard from Facebook, we have decided to return to Seattle with Moments.  I know that, at least for me, this seems like an odd decision.  We will be trading sunshine, warm water and palm trees for rain and cold.  I know that the rain is not all Seattle has to offer, but for me it has always been the major deterrent.  Still, we decided to return because it makes the most since for us during the coming year.   Adam was offered a job here but has elected to pursue opportunities at home, partially because his remaining in Honolulu to work would mean yet another long period of long distance for us.  So, we embark on this voyage hoping to have a few months together in Seattle before I have to start traipsing around the country for residency interviews and return to North Carolina to graduate!  We are no longer in Honolulu and will be leaving for Seattle from Hanalei Bay on Kauai where we are currently anchored.  Having stayed in Honolulu for three weeks we were definitely sad to leave our friends and all of the wonderful things that city had to offer.  We are already talking about the "next time" we come to Hawaii!

Another big thing that happened is that our crew member arrived!  For this northern passage we decided that having an extra set of hands on board would be helpful.  The boat is definitely a little more crowded but even after the 24-hour sail to Kauai we are already glad that Andrew is with us.  Yesterday he reeled in the first Mahi Mahi of the trip and we had an excellent fish dinner after dropping anchor in Hanalei.  Andrew has just finished grad school at the University of Wisconsin and is an instructor for the Hoofer's Sailing Club, where Adam and I met.  Speaking of Adam and I meeting, that is another big thing that happened this week: on Friday we celebrated 5 years together!  We actually didn't celebrate much because we were running around trying to get out of the marina in Honolulu before they charged us an extra day.  Isn't it every girl's dream to leave for a month-long voyage with minimal sleep and bathing opportunities on her anniversary?  Well, it was definitely a way to mark the day!

We wouldn't have been able to provision this boat without the help of my friend Rachel from college.  She and her husband Kevin (who I met on my first day at UNC) were just transferred here with the Navy and we spent a wonderful afternoon sailing at Waikiki with them and their two boys.  Rachel was kind enough to drive us to the gas station, auto parts store, hardware store, and Costco so that we could really load up.  Adam and I then made an epic produce buying trip to Chinatown, the best place to buy fresh produce in Honolulu.  We brought it all home in our backpacks and a wheeled cart on the bus during rush hour, an adventure in itself.  Then, the morning we were about to pull away from the dock, we checked the weather for the last time and all we saw was bad news.  Tropical depression Wali, which has been lingering out in the Pacific, finally decided to make a slow move for Hawaii.  I madly scoured the internet and radio for whatever information I could find on its projected course and then finally called NOAA where, when I explained our situation, I was both surprised and pleased to be put right through to a forecaster who could answer all of my questions about Wali and discuss the weather possibilities for our trip.  We decided to leave Honolulu after all and as I write this we are currently being pounded by rain from the dissipating outer arms of the storm.  Luckily we will not see any of the stronger winds that such a storm could have brought with it.  We plan to spend the next 24-hours in Hanalei to rest and complete some final projects while we wait out the rain.

For this trip we plan to continue checking in with the Pacific Seafarers Net and make our regular position reports.  We expect the trip to take about three weeks as this is a much shorter distance than from Mexico to Hilo.  However, due to the North Pacific High, an area with no wind in the middle of the North Pacific Ocean, we may have to head to about 40 degrees north before turning west at all.  It all depends on the position of the system which this year seems to have a nasty tendency to more around more than it typically does.

Check back with the blog.  We will try to send a few updates like we did on our last crossing.  So long landlubbers!