Niue Passage Day 7

Miles traveled day 6: 131
Miles traveled total: 870
Miles left to Niue: 220

It suddenly occurred to me last night when Rob woke me up for my 5:00 watch that our watch schedule is so not in my favor. All this time I thought Rob had it really tough on watches because he has the 2:00 am to 5:00 am watch, and by the time he goes to bed at 5:00 am he’s only had 3 hours sleep (from 11:00 pm to 2:00 am). But what I finally realized (and it only took me three years to figure this one out) is that I get woken up twice every night, and he only gets woken up once! It’s like I’ve done twice as many night watches as he has, because getting out of the bunk and back outside is really the hardest part. And once I’m up for the 5:00 watch I just let him sleep until he wakes up, which is usually sometime before 9:00 am.

The reason I realized it last night is because for the first time since we left Northern California, we’re fully dressed in foulies, fleece and all, and it takes a long time to get all that gear on and off twice every night. I’m amazed how cold it’s getting at night, and we’re not that far south yet. We’re only at 18 degrees south, which in Mexico terms is the Gold Coast (Barra de Navidad and Tenicatita), where it was plenty warm at night. Here and now, however, we’re in the dead of winter and there is absolutely nothing between us and Antarctica to warm up this southeasterly wind.

We continue to have a lovely sail – bouncy but lovely. The wind is scheduled to clock around to the northeast this afternoon, which will be interesting with the southeast swell we always have coming from the southern ocean. But we only have two days left, so it should be bearable. And maybe the northeasterly wind waves will flatten the southeast swell a bit and give us a quieter ride.

The weather forecast continues to improve for our visit to Niue. We’ve made contact with the guy in charge of the buoys there and he thinks the weather will be fine to pick up a mooring mid day Friday. We’ve heard from other folks there recently that the whales are there at the island and you can practically hop overboard and go for a swim with them. Don’t really know if that’s on my need-to-do list, but it will be nice to see some whales. And we’re told that there is “a big Village day here on Saturday as well as an ear piercing ceremony. Never a dull moment.” We’ll see what that’s like on Saturday.