My one rule about getting an early start is don’t get back in bed after the alarm has gone off. This morning I didn’t follow my own advice. My alarm went off and I promptly got out off bed and brushed my teeth. I glanced out of the head port and noticed there was no wind.
With lobster traps to negotiate preferably under sail, I woke Frances and asked if we should wait a bit for the wind to come up before leaving. Frances rolled over and went back to sleep before I could get much of an answer and I decided to go back to bed. The only problem was Frances did make a decision and ten minutes later I was trying to will myself back out of bed and this time my brain was trying desperately to hit the non-existent snooze button.
Frances and Riikka were already in the galley making breakfast by the time I appeared, a sign that we were indeed going to give the wind a few extra minutes to fill in, instead of the normal grab a cup of tea and pull anchor.
With a cup of hot lemon in hand it was a little easier to come to terms with being awake before sunrise. Sure enough not long after pulling anchor, we found ourselves surrounded by Lobster traps with long pieces of orange floating line trailing in the water.
The wind still hadn’t filled in and we motored gingerly past, putting the engine in neutral as we glided past the floats marking the traps. When the density increased, we gave up motoring a put out our sails hoping there was enough breeze to keep steerage. We weren’t going to break any speed records but at least Snow Dragon would be safe from wrapping a line around her new prop. Even with line cutters, it wasn’t an appealing option.
By the time we neared Halifax, the light wind became even lighter as we began crossing the shipping lanes. Hoisting the spinnaker kept us moving a bit longer but eventually we had to face the fact that a sail change was needed that it involved the turn of a key.
We couldn’t see any lobster traps but were still nervous about starting the engine. I decided to call Halifax Coast Guard and see if they could provide details about the location of the traps. The woman I spoke to assured me that there would be traps but not until we reached Sheet Harbour 45 miles ahead of us, enough distance to give us confidence to motor in the dark.
Now many of you probably wonder what we eat at sea. Well, tonight Frances is busy in the galley making pot stickers and I’m about to make a melon mango salad. The seas are calm and life is good.