Sailing Adventures #5 – Sailing the Pacific

Sailing has been a passion since I first learned to sail, more than 40 years ago.  It sounds like a long time but in reality the years have passed quickly.  There are so many oceans and seas yet to explore.  Today, for the first time, I sailed in to the Pacific.  I have been on other boats before but never sailed, on my own, past the channel buoy and out in to the Pacific Ocean.  My heart pounded and I was actually quite nervous despite all my years of sailing knowledge.  I suppose it was due to my lack of experience in this setting.  On the east coast, I can sail without charts and without navigating for that matter, as I have it rote, in my head.  But now I was in unchartered waters and wasn’t sure what to expect.  One thing I did know, the weather was perfect.  Although a Hurricane was churning off the coast of Baja, California, it would not affect my day.  The weather was sunny, the temperature was 72 degrees Farenheit, 22 Celsius and the seas were calm.  Although the wind was supposed to increase to 20 knots, there was only a light 10 knot breeze.  As I left the Getty of Long beach behind and looked out at the vastness of the Pacific, I was in awe.  Out there in the seemingly endless distance, was Australia, Hawaii, Japan.  At 200 miles per day, it would take me almost two weeks to reach Honolulu, Hawaii.  With only enough food for one day, I decided it wouldn’t be prudent.  But it was certainly fun to think about.  By mid afternoon, the wind was blowing at a steady 18 knots, just over twenty miles per hour.  Drugs are to an addict what wind is to a sailor.  I couldn’t get enough.  I tacked back and forth all day until the last possible moment when I had to take the boat back to the dock.  The day felt as if only  minutes had passed and I realized when I stepped off the boat, I must come back and make that journey to Hawaii a reality.  It’s now officially part of my bucket list and a goal I look forward to accomplishing.

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