Saturday noon, 470 miles from Sotogrande

Our winds filled in from the north and we shut down the engine at 5:00 am today.  The water has taken on a particularly arresting azure blue since leaving the Azores.  Everyone has commented on it, though they have become too jaded to even get up for a dolphin pod citing (I still whoop each time).  We are close reaching really for the first time of the trip, bouncing along nicely in the gentle but building breeze.  Dana took the helm, again grinning, and said it was nice to be sailing to weather. This puts us back on a heel, where we had quickly become accustomed to flat living.  Port tack, so the dishes stay secure but the refrigerators spew forth their contents upon opening. I had solo watch this morning, my last of the journey.  I was contentedly melancholy, both for Mary and the rest of the kids, all of whom I miss terribly, and for the fact that this incredible journey will come to an end.  I had thought I would be sick of the boat by now, the opposite is true.  I keep thinking of the Jimmy Buffet line “All of these nights I just dream of the ocean, God I wish I were sailing again.”  I thought this morning, every time I hear that, I will think of this last solo watch, one of the few moments alone on deck, in this perfect, crisp, northeastern breeze, the sails trimmed and the helm balanced for fingertip control, my dear friends only a dozen feet away. Thank you to my loved ones for letting me do this, I’m so sorry to have caused you worry.

Enjoy the pictures!

MJ

Dana, happily close reaching
Dana, happily close reaching
Liz, self rigged against heel, self-illuminating
Liz, self rigged against heel, self-illuminating
Tom at the helm
Tom at the helm
Matt the navigator, shooting Venus
Matt the navigator, shooting Venus
Cam on watch at sunset
Cam on watch at sunset
Calm Seas, Halfway from Azores to Spain
Calm Seas, Halfway from Azores to Spain
Bill and Tanker, 1.5 miles away
Bill and Tanker, 1.5 miles away
Flat seas, lazy Friday
Flat seas, lazy Friday
Cribbage TED talk
Cribbage TED talk

12 thoughts on “Saturday noon, 470 miles from Sotogrande

  1. Mixed emotions!! So happy you are safe, getting close to Spain & that you have experienced such an unbelievable trip! So sad these post will end soon! Enjoy every last moment!

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  2. Looking at these pix, we are all left wondering if Dana will ever again be content sailing on Lake Champlain on boats of 30 feet or less. 😉

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    • Love you too! About to have eggplant parm for dinner. Just put a second reef in the main. Only 18 knots but on the nose. Rocky. Sleep tight!

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  3. Thank you for sharing your adventure with those of us who will never experience anything like it. What a gift from your families and from God! I love knowing the subject of your TED talks! I have been considering what mine could be. I think how to roll your hair for a proper Texas hair do and how to tie bows to make your gifts look fabulous! Let me know which you want to hear first! Love to all!!

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  4. I do not want it to end, I truly don’t – and I know I do not speak for my sister – But it allows me, in a Walter Mitty way, to break from the work and the meetings, and vicariously cram a day with you at sea, all in just a few minutes

    An adventure to be shared with so many – What a gift you are giving

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  5. On one level, i’m so w/Bobby on his above noted sentiments, and yet on another am so longing for all of your safe return, sooner vs later. These blog communications have been fantastic! All so very real. They’ve been so well written, informative, reflective, humorous, … inspiring! There’s not any reading I’ve ever, ever enjoyed more! You’ve transported us and continue to do so. Michael, thanks for continuing to keep this as active as you have throughout. It was appreciated early in this voyage that you were not only an awesome captain, but great communicator! Bill, it’s been equally reassuring to me to have you as part of this phenomenal team.
    I look forward to your crews sentiments if/when able, if they may be so inclined. (…may be like a college writing assignment in the midst of a lot of ‘more important stuff’ … so if we don’t read it here, I will look forward to hearing it upon their, and all of your safe return! xo

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  6. Your post brought a tear or two. From Day One of this incredible journey your daily pics and posts have both calmed my fears and excited my senses. Thank you Michael for taking me along. It has been an extraordinary experience! Your posts and everyone’s comments have brought us together like an extended family. Now it’s difficult even for us on shore to say farewell! On the hand, we want favorable seas to bring you safely home SOON!! We miss you!!

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  7. I hope you enjoy every precious moment with your crew out there sailing on the ocean in that beautiful Bluemoon. Thank you for sharing your love of sailing and the sea with us. ❤️Prayers have been answered and prayers will continue until your adventurous journey brings you all safely home.❤️

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