CUBA TRAVEL JOURNAL

Our Passage

June 30, 1998 8:15am

The seas set down to about two feet over the night which was overcast. The clouds hid all light from the stars and moon. We had only the phosphorescence in the water stirred by our wake to look at. All else was perfect blackness except the lightning. Electrical storms threatened us from all directions except on our location and our course. A lucky break indeed!

We passed the time in silence, listening to music until about midnight and then dozed fitfully. Once set, the sails and rudder held our course fairly well needing only occasional adjustment.

We still have over seventy miles to go and probably will make a night landing. I find myself wondering how thoroughly customs will toss the boat and how many times I've read more than several sets of officials will visit a vessel so everyone can get in on the action. We'll see.

June 30, 1998 2:30pm

The wind has shifted and it's impossible to set the wheel and leave it. Chris and I take turns wrestling to keep the yacht on course. We're still over thirty-five miles out and are getting tired. We sleep for ten or twenty minutes when not at the wheel and look to the horizon hoping to spot Cuba and the lighthouse that will lead to Cienfuegos.

June 30, 1998 6:45pm

 

Chris had dropped a lure in the water to tow behind us as we cruised. About twenty-two miles out, just near Baja de Jugua, we hooked into a fifty pound yellow fin tuna. Though it cost us an hour traveling time, landing it assured us not only fresh fish for dinner but also the possibility of a BBQ on the beach tomorrow night - all welcome!

However, there's fish blood all over the wheel area where we sit which is stacked with our diving tanks. We've tried to wash it down but it seems impossible and continues to seep from everywhere.

 

Throughout the day, a gecko I snared in Grand Cayman and placed in the cabin to eat cockroaches made regular appearances.

I grew concerned after not seeing him for a while and simultaneously spotting a messy smear on Chris' shorts. Fortunately, while writing this, I watched him crawl out of my sack and continue his explorations.

 

The seas are quite calm as we approach Cienfuegos, apparently unusual, as winds rushing down the mountain normally whip up high seas for a rock and roll approach to the coast.

1998 John Petrak

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