Suspecting that I would be very busy at this time, I prepared in advance several blogs for posting. They seem so irrelevant now and do not capture the level of activity happening. It’s been my goal to have everything done a week before I leave so that in the last week I could relax, enjoy company, sit calmly in the boat, and go through manuals to prepare. It’s not likely to happen. Today’s activities included working with renowned ocean sailor, Steve Pettengill, who is looking at hydraulic leaks which have started to occur in a number of places on the boat. He will be on board again next Wednesday, the “three days to go mark,” working with Steve Tofield of Lyman Morse to put together some last minute changes to my halyards and sheets.
Today I also refilled my small scuba tank and purchased another in preparation for the possibility that I may need to go overboard to cut free a fishing net, repair a hole from a collision, or simply to clean the bottom to get more speed. I also bought a new small-spear gun to help land fish and an extra piece of life raft equipment. Also, because of the hydraulic leak, I purchased two more jugs of hydraulic fluid – just in case. As stated earlier, so much weight has been removed from the boat in the way of toilets, doors, anchors and chain, but now with all the extra spare parts and tools, reserve fluids and such coming on board, not to forget provisions, I think we are close to being back at the original weight.
Today I also took several psychological tests that will help compare me with Dodge Morgan, whose 150 day Bermuda to Bermuda record it is I seek to break. So, how do I feel? I feel OK, but I am concerned that I will not be as ready as I had hoped and that many minor but possibly significant preparations will not have been made. But then, Dodge was not ready either. I need another month just to go through the manuals and test out all procedures. There is just no time. It will be OK. There are sailors in ports around the world, stuck there by their desire to have everything right before they sail. It does not happen that way. I have to accept that and I will be ready in just ten days.