I'm a Puffin!
Apparently, puffins mate for life, but separate during the winter to go their own way, reuniting back at their nesting site. I'm looking to do a bunch of sailing and training culminating in a nearly year-long voyage. I'll be separated from Anne for long periods of time, but I'll always be returning to our home, to her. Puffins even kiss when they come back together. Ok, they tap their beaks together, but close enough!
This morning was spent studying up on handling boats in a storm. I found an interesting article about single-handed sailors and a series of knock downs, de-mastings, etc., and the events that led up to the misfortunes as well as the measures they did take both successfully and unsuccessfully to prevent it. While we aren't planning on going through any storms during the cruising and learning sails, it doesn't hurt to have studied up on them.
One of the interesting things is that most of the single-handed sailors seem to eschew drogues. A drogue is something you attach to the stern of your ship and trail out behind you. It's sort of like a parachute in the water and it helps hold you stern-on to the oncoming waves. Apparently there is some belief that they slow you down too much rather than allowing you to move quickly with the wave and, therefore, lessen the force it imparts to your boat. Plus they apparently take a lot of strength to pull back in (they are designed to create a lot of drag in the water and when you pull it in, you're pulling it against all that drag). This makes it difficult in a storm to pull it back in if you determine that it's being more hinderance than help. Yes, they often have a trip line to sort of invert the drogue and make it easier to haul in, but apparently the trip line has a tendency to get tangled and become useless.
It should be said that these boats were in the southern sea - that world-circling ocean near Antarctica. With no land to get in the way, the waves there can get huge and move quickly.
So what did seem to work well? A drag line. A long, long, long line (rope) attached to the back of your boat and allowed to trail out behind you. If you looped it so that both ends were attached to your boat but the middle was paid out behind you, it seemed to strike a good balance between drag and recovery, allowing you to move with the waves, but still keep you stern-on to them.
Of course, that won't help if hit by a "rogue wave" coming from some other direction.
I started a shared document for the crew of the Quijote so that we can plan our provisioning and share with each other what we're planning on bringing with us. Obviously, first priority goes to the things we need such as food, fuel, water, safety equipment, etc. Next comes the things we want and finally the nice to haves. Right now the document is more a brainstorming list that we'll pare down as departure gets closer. it also contains a calendar of important dates and events we need to take care of as well as plans.
And, lastly, I started researching what's required for entry into Mexico. Being the only Canadian, I am researching what I need to do since that may be slightly different than what the U.S. folks want to do. Although, being a dual-nationality, I am researching both to see which might be easier to deal with. It might well be that using my U.S. citizenship could be easier. We'll see.
Other things I did today was my exercises this morning and evening, finishing up the laundry from the weekend, and partially packing my bag for this coming cruise around Vancouver island.
Anne and I did a light going over of finances. She's being an angel about this and helping me see where we can get this or that penny, where we can get some quarters together, etc., to help pay for the big sail. If this is all successful, she deserves at least as much credit for making this a reality as I do.