Day 7, underway to New Zealand. 525 miles to go.
We’ve been pretty much becalmed for two days now. Yesterday we were able to sail 20 miles towards Opua when a nice wind came up in the afternoon. By nightfall however the wind had died down completely again and we were left to drift for another night. We drifted 10 miles in a north-setting current by morning.
It was still a glassy sea when we looked around in the daylight this morning. We downloaded a weather GRIB that showed we’d likely have some sailing wind by Tuesday, three days from now. Right now though we are stuck literally in the middle of a huge high pressure area, smack between NZ and Tonga. It’s been harder and harder to spin a positive light on this.
But the day sure has turned around since then. It’s almost time to start making dinner and we’re moving along nicely now at 5.0 knots. It’s still a lake outside and our engine is cold as a stone. That’s because we’re being towed by the Canadian Coast Guard toward Opua today.
Bet you didn’t see that coming? Neither did we, imagine that. And this morning when friends on Longshot II called us on the VHF and offered to tow us out of the middle of this windless high we thought they were joking. They weren’t.
Longshot II is Hans Christian 43 sailed by a family of 5 out of Victoria, B.C. Her captain, Susan, is also a Captain of high speed rescue boats in the Canadian Coast Guard and it is in her blood not to let us drift aimlessly like sitting ducks in this normally stormy sea. Along with Susan’s equally generous husband Doug, they motored towards us over 25 miles, tossed us a 100′ long line which we hitched to a bow bridle and we got underway. Also assisting was another family boat, Water Music, who came alongside us too. Bill launched his kayak and brought over a care package of yummy snacks for the girls sent from his daughter Melodie. He also helped ferry over jerry jugs of diesel that we insisted Longshot take.
So far we’re going perfectly; even pulling us Longshot is only making a knot or so less than their normal motoring speed. Wondertime is drifting forward ever so calmly and quietly, it feels like we are at anchor down below. They plan to pull us until we’re out of this high and into the northerly wind that should push us the rest of the way to Opua.
I’m not even sure what to say about all this except that we are truly overwhelmed by the generosity of this little community of ours and today our boat is overflowing with hope.