Warning: If you are a man trying to convince your wife to go sailing, don’t share this post with her. This post is in relation to the 80:20 rule and it is not about the good bits.
I the Miss have been known to paint the world with a rose coloured brush, which is usually easy to do. I tend to look for the good in people and situations until proved otherwise. When I was cold and hungry, when I was exhausted and had wet soggy feet and then I was feeding the fish, my colour was more green than rosie.
I couldn’t kid myself. This trip was horrible and I just wished it would end. We were leaving Tunisia and doing the 150 nautical miles from Tunis to Villasimius Sardinia.
Like Cinderella We Left Late
It was our fault for leaving Tunis late, though it did take about 3 hours to say goodbye to the National Guard, Customs, local Tunisian police and the local mechanic. Sitting in bland empty rooms as part of the security process, was a theme that stayed with us from the moment we arrived here to the moment we left. I almost ran back to the boat, I was so happy to have the formalities done and ready to leave this place. It was 12.20 pm, it would have been ideal to leave at 6am, it wasn’t to be, you make the most of what time you have.
We knew leaving depended on the weather forecast, so it was go right now or in four days time. It was time to go.
It all started out so positive, If you read my facebook post from journey’s start, I was wearing my rose coloured glasses. In a short time, I was bumping into the furniture.
I think I signed off “life is good” I probably made myself sick right then and there.
There Are Billions Of People Who Have Never Been Seasick
I thought about this fact during the night and thought there are at least a billion people smarter than me.
With seasickness, you know you are in trouble when you start salivating,your body is self sabotaging. Next I am yawning with the onset of tiredness. A general feeling of malaise overtakes me. Every aspect of life becomes an effort except breathing.
Damned If You Do and Damned If You Don’t
I knew I was in trouble, unlike the Captain he didn’t see it coming.
The poor Captain, he was in trouble last time for not being nice enough. So this trip he was being really nice. So imagine his surprise, when at one point, I told the leader of our fine vessel, to shut the fuck up and stop asking me if I felt ok. That’s bad isn’t it? Never the less, I felt at the time it was appropriate. I know it sounds harsh. His crime was offering me dinner which he had just cooked.
After 26 years of marriage you’d think he could read my mind, or at least my body signals, that a dry biscuit was needed, not a culinary chinese masterpiece. I’m sure it was the aroma wafting from the kitchen that was the turning point.
As Captain he should know, cooking smells are offensive to a lady with a delicate tummy.
(Do you like the way I can choose to be a lady when I want.)
21 Years Ago I Didn’t Swear
Now, 21 years ago on this very night’s anniversary, whilst pushing our son’s large head out of a space that is a design flaw on the Creator’s behalf, I didn’t swear. Not once. Who needs to swear whilst experiencing blinding white hot pain, pain so bad you think that death might be a better option. Pain with no drug relief, as he was arriving, most inconveniently, at the front door of our home.
So 21 years on, to the day, it did cross my mind how much I have changed
I’m not saying seasickness is worse than labour, that would be ridiculous. What I am saying is swearing at your husband whilst experiencing seasickness, is a valid reaction to a question such as “What Type Of Biscuit Do You Want?” The best remedy for seasickness is to sit under a tree, if this option is not available then the odd expletive directed at the twat being nice to you, is reasonable. This is one of those undeniable truths.
Don’t feel sorry for the Captain as you read this:
A. He has a wife sailing around an ocean with him making him a lucky man.
B. Being nice to a person who is seasick doesn’t make the sufferer feel any better.
C. I was sure the Captain was the cause of my current ills, just by being the Captain, as well as the Chef. What I am trying to say is, it was his fault I felt like rubbish.
Goodbye Tunis, Hello Villasimius Sardinia Italy
The start of the trip was excellent. Winds for the entire night were at 20 knots minimum and when we got past the last land mass, Cape Farina it was 29 knots. Plus the wind was pushing us the way we wanted to go. It made the trip speedy. I like speed it means we get to the destination point faster. Fast and safe is really good. Our boat handles speed well, especially when you are down wind on a run, that’s when the wind is directly behind you, it doesn’t even feel like you are moving fast. Your boat is just gobbling up the sea miles quicker than normal.
Just then I started to feel a little green around the gills. Woah there!
THAT wasn’t on the 24 hour agenda. How could my body do this to me on my happy night of escape. What had all the potential to be a really good night, was turning into a “don’t talk to me”, “don’t look at me”, “why do you have to cook near me” and just for a moment I would like those big waves that we are surfing down, to LEAVE.
I think it started to be full on seasickness when we put the first reef in the main sail. A reef is when you drop your sail down to make it smaller, so it makes it safer in high winds. This is a particularly good strategy when night sailing, as you can’t see the weather coming towards you. Plus we knew the destination position, The Gulf of Cagliari is notorious for having thunderstorms and rain. We thought things could get hairy, but the weather forecast was a change for 1.00pm the next day, we expected to be in port by around 12pm so hopefully we would just miss bad weather.
Ha Ha, weather forecast lies again, though I am no longer surprised. By nights end we had all three reefs in the main and were still going fast at one point in the final hours we were zinging along at 12.5 knots.
The Last Three Hours Took FOREVER
I had been forewarned that the end of the trip was likely to be strong winds, high waves, lightning and thunder storms. If we had left on time we would have missed the bad weather but hindsight is a wonderful thing. It was wet, it was cold, we were surfing waves, and at one point lightning struck about 100 metres in front of the boat. Way too close for comfort, especially when you have a huge white aluminum pole sticking up into the air daring nature to “Come on, hit me!”
The only consolation was, as the weather got worse my 12 hours of seasickness seemed to be passing. Oh What JOY! to feel human again.
This trip was the first time (with my head on the table) I wondered what the hell am I doing here. You will be pleased, well maybe not my Mum, but hopefully the rest of you to know this moment of self doubt has passed. When we arrived at Port Villasimius the weather was so bleak and crappy, no one even noticed we had arrived. After we had moored, with a small amount of drama, we went inside our boat which was in a state of chaos, had a hot shower, a bowl of that wonderous Chinese dish from the night before, went to bed and slept for an hour before checking into port. I wasn’t prepared to walk to the port authority while it was still raining. I had no intention of getting wet not even one drop on this day, I had been wet and cold long enough the past 23 hours.
When I left the boat it was like I had stepped onto another planet, the difference was so great. The view, the cold, the clean, the gutters and the European flavour rather than African middle east was heady.
We Still Have A Long Way To Go
Going back to France at this time of year is not ideal. We feel we have no choice.
When our boat was built, along with a handful of others, the sikaflex that was used throughout the entire boat was part of a bad bunch. I can’t blame anybody it’s just bad luck it was picked up too late in the piece. Our sikaflex has never dried out, the whole lot from the bottom of the boat to the top, has to be scrapped and replaced. Plus our autopilot is not right, a dagger board won’t go down easily and our holding tanks have a sensor issue. Catana can fix all these issues which are minors to them, it just requires us to get back to France for the repairs to happen. I know they would come to us, but we prefer to get the job done at the yard. The Captain thinks it would be best.
We have purchased a boat to sail, so a sailing we will go.
the Green Miss
PS my seasickness was not really the Captains fault. The fault was in part was mine as I left harbour without having eaten for the day and an empty stomach is not a good starting point for me. Still I have asked him not to cook anymore in the first 24 hours of sailing as a new guideline for us.
PPS I am very disappointed that I took so few photos and none when the weather and waves were at their height.
I was a little preoccupied.
PPPS We got wet because the Captain wasn’t interested in using the hand held auto pilot and I needed to be outside.