Sunday 23rd Sept '07
Things have calmed down a touch today - not so much evidence of seas heaping up with the S or SW swell, just the SE wind-swell, although that's often up to 3m, but not so much this evening ...only hit very occasionally with a bigger one!
The weather seemed at first today to be repeating a pattern of the past few days - increasing heavy cloud, then a shower or two ... but it decided, by early afternoon, to cheer up & the grey clouds disappeared - just 'tradewind clouds' later ... and a fair sunset... lots of stars & a lovely bright moon tonight.
I intended making dinner yesterday around 8pm.... but on first going up to take in a reef, with our speed up in somewhat increased wind, I was amazed to find I was surrounded by bright lights... an Indonesian fishing fleet of about a dozen boats had come to visit...!! They were well-spaced out, a mile or more apart, but several were right on or near my path, so I had to spend quite a time in the cockpit until the very last one was safely well astern.... took nearly two hours, and dinner was very late!! NO AIS signals nor, in most cases, any radar signal either..! Also only bright white lights, no nav lights to help sort out from a distance what they were doing.. At least they seemed to be keeping well out of my way!
During the night, the usual small flying fish met their end on deck... also two larger ones - so I decided to try makng 'ceviche' from them - worked out fine, so made a very good lunch with my last, nicely-ripened avocado. I used a filleting knife to get two nice, de-boned fillets from each fish - even managed to cut off skin without too much problem... Tonight, had pasta&sauce I didn't have last night (changed menu to frankfurters &potatoes last night) with mango for dessert - trying to finish before Cocos, in case Aussies take mangoes away... gather they've a fruit-fly worry on Cocos... just two more mangoes left now.
I'm hoping for another nice day, like this afternoon, tomorrow, expecting to make Cocos around, or soon after, midday - perfect for a reef entry!!
At noon today, 24hr distance was a very ordinary 156 ml (unlike yesterday's 181 ml!) with 165ml to go to Cocos Keeling.